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BritBox International Expands ‘Death in Paradise’ Universe With BBC, Sets Lenny Henry Series With ITV, ‘Crime,’ ‘The Cleaner’ Return

The Cleaner Death in Paradise
BBC/ Studio Hamburg UK/Jonathan Browning

The universe of the globally popular “Death in Paradise” series is being expanded with new show “Beyond Paradise.”

The new series follows characters who have moved from sunny Saint Marie to rural Britain. Co-commissioned by BBC One and BritBox International, and reuniting Kris Marshall and Sally Bretton in the lead roles, the six-part “Beyond Paradise,” created by Tony Jordan and Robert Thorogood, will be produced by Red Planet Pictures.

Executive chair of Red Planet, Jordan, will act as showrunner and executive producer alongside Tim Key and Belinda Campbell, and Diederick Santer and Tommy Bulfin will executive produce for BritBox International and BBC respectively. BBC Studios will handle international distribution. The series is produced by Lindsay Hughes and directed by Sandy Johnson. Filming will start on location in the U.K. later this year.

The deal is part of a slate with U.K. broadcasters BBC and ITV unveiled by BritBox at an event in London on Wednesday. BritBox International is the streaming service jointly operated internationally by the BBC and ITV.

Inspired by stories of his mother Winifred, “Three Little Birds,” written by Lenny Henry, is a celebration of Black womanhood that follows three young women as they travel to Britain from Jamaica to build a new life. Tiger Aspect Productions will produce the six-part drama, which is an ITV commission and BritBox co-production, in association with Henry’s Douglas Road Productions. Charles McDougall, Yero Timi Biu and Darcia Martin will direct two episodes each and Henry, Russell T. Davies, Lucy Bedford, Charles MacDougall will serve as executive producers, along with Santer for BritBox. Banijay Rights will handle international distribution.

“Make it at Market” sees Dom Chinea (“The Repair Shop”) work with a team of business and craft experts to help a group of budding entrepreneurs make a living from their crafting hobby. It is made by Flabbergast TV, with Andrew Snowball executive producing. The commissioning editor for BBC Daytime is Rachel Platt and the commissioner for BritBox is Santer.

Among renewed series, Dougray Scott will return as troubled detective Ray Lennox, in a second season of thriller “Crime,” adapted from the best-selling novel by “Trainspotting” writer Irvine Welsh, scripted by him alongside screenwriting partner Dean Cavanagh. The six-part drama will premiere on streamer ITVX ahead of a linear transmission on ITV’s main channel. “Crime” is being produced by Buccaneer Media and Off Grid Film. BritBox International will be the exclusive home to the series in all BritBox territories.

A second season of “The Cleaner,” written by and starring Greg Davies, sees him encounter yet another variety of larger than life characters, all in the wrong place at the wrong time. And as his luck will have it, there’s also a pub in desperate need of mopping up. The Cleaner is a SHUK production for BBC One. The BBC commissioner is Ben Caudell, the executive producer is Vivien Muller-Rommel and the producer is Sam Ward. BBC Studios will distribute the series globally, excluding German language markets.

In ITV drama “Karen Pirie,” based on Val McDermid’s celebrated crime novels, Lauren Lyle (“Outlander”) plays the lead detective sergeant Karen Pirie who is tasked with reopening an unsolved murder that has been the subject of a provocative true crime podcast. World Productions (“Line of Duty”) produce the series, which is adapted by Emer Kenny (“Harlots”). It was commissioned for ITV by head of drama, Polly Hill. Drama commissioner Huw Kennair-Jones oversaw production for ITV. It is executive produced by Simon Heath, World Production’s CEO, Kenny and McDermid, directed by Gareth Bryn (“Line of Duty”) and produced by Clare Kerr (“The Nest”). BritBox International will be the exclusive home to the series in North America. The series is distributed by ITV Studios.

Reemah Sakaan, CEO BritBox International, said: “At BritBox International, we continue to strive to bring our audiences incredible content. There is no other streamer out there like us, we are unmistakably unique. As we continue to grow globally, our new on-the-ground team is embedded into the fabric of British creativity, enabling seamless and passionate storytelling partnerships for U.K. producers. This is brought to life by the new shows we’ve announced today and will be a hallmark of our future commissioning and originals strategy.”

Diederick Santer, CCO BritBox International, added: “Working with the very best U.K. producers, we have curated a set of shows which we are confident will excite our existing subscribers, while attracting new audiences to our platforms. Whether a new and surprising take on the mystery genre, a fresh and distinctive crime series, or a personal story from a national treasure, these shows epitomise our mission – to bring the best of British TV to a global audience.”