Channel 4 and Xbox Entertainment Studios partner on Humans

Kudos to produce 8 x 60 original drama series for 2015.

Channel 4 and Microsoft’s Xbox Entertainment Studios today announced an innovative co-production deal for bold new drama series Humans, based on the hit Swedish sci-fi drama Real Humans. Produced by award-winning Kudos (Emmy Award-winning The Hour, Utopia, Broadchurch, The Tunnel) the new 8 x 60 series will share a 2015 premiere broadcast window on both Channel 4 in the UK and the Xbox platform in North America.

Written by British writing partnership Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley (Spooks, Spooks: The Greater Good), Humans is an English language adaptation of Sveriges Television (SVT) and Matador Films’ acclaimed series.

Set in a parallel present where the latest must-have gadget for any busy family is a ‘Synth’ - a highly-developed robotic servant that’s so similar to a real human it’s transforming the way we live. When a rushed-off-his-feet suburban father of three buys a refurbished second-hand Synth, he hopes it will relieve some domestic pressure and paper over the cracks of his marriage. But sharing their life with a machine has far-reaching and chilling consequences - for this Synth, the cuckoo in the nest, is harbouring an extraordinary secret.

Channel 4 Head of Drama, Piers Wenger says: “In Humans, Sam and Jon have not only crafted an ingenious and imaginative thriller, but they’re also asking big, thought-provoking questions about how we live. I’m thrilled to be working once again with the team at Kudos and to be partnering with Xbox to bring this extraordinary and epic series to the screen. This is the first co-production commission to benefit from Channel 4’s increased investment in drama and reaffirms our commitment to ambitious, highly original drama series.”

President of Microsoft’s Xbox Entertainment Studios, Nancy Tellem says: “Humans not only questions personal relationships, but we loved how this sci-fi show toys with reality and our connection to technology.” She adds “This deal with Channel 4 and Kudos underscores Xbox Entertainment Studios' commitment to programming premium TV series with global partners and creating engaging interactive experiences – and sits alongside other original commissions including a Halo TV series executive produced by Steven Spielberg.”

Executive Producer Kudos, Jane Featherstone says: “Exploring themes of love, discrimination and integration, this thrilling, beautifully written series allows us to get under the skin of what it means to be human in the most compelling way. The bold, innovative storylines and subject matter lend themselves perfectly to this pioneering collaboration with Channel 4 and Xbox.”

Filming in the UK will begin in summer 2014, with casting to be announced.

Humans (8 x 60’) will be made by Kudos (Utopia, Broadchurch, The Hour) in association with Matador Films (Real Humans) for a premiere broadcast on Channel 4 and Xbox in 2015. Executive producers are Jane Featherstone (Broadchurch, Utopia, The Hour) and Derek Wax (The Hour, Occupation, Lip Service) for Kudos, and Henrik Widman and Lars Lundström for Matador Films, and Chris Fry (The Smoke) is to produce. Commissioned for Channel 4 by Piers Wenger and Beth Willis and for Xbox Entertainment Studios by Nancy Tellem, the deal was brokered by Dan Isaacs, COO of Kudos, Ben McLean, SVP of Business Affairs for Xbox Entertainment Studios, Channel 4’s Director of Commercial Affairs Martin Baker and by Matt Vassello and Gordon Synn on behalf of Shine International. Adapted from ‘Real Humans’ the original Swedish production from Sveriges Television (SVT) and Matador Films, distribution will be handled by Shine International.

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