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ZDFE signs Sky Living drama in Bonafide development deal

German distributor ZDF Enterprises has acquired global sales rights to upcoming UK drama Talking to the Dead, and scored a development deal with the show’s producer.

2x60mins Procedural Talking… is based on the Harry Bingham novel of the same name and will launch on BSkyB’s female-skewed Sky Living channel. It follows a wayward police officer that has a peculiar empathy for the dead and is scheduled to broadcast this autumn.

ZDFE, the content distribution arm of German pubcaster ZDF, has acquired sales rights to the scripted show following a deal with producer Bonafide Films. Warp Films is the show’s other coproducer.

Furthermore, the pair has signed agreed a development deal that will see ZDFE provide financial investments in new Bonafide projects through international coproduction agreements, acquisitions and licensing deals. It will also sell the resulting shows, which will be drama and comedy series for UK and international broadcasters, on the global market.

Comedy writer and performer Sacha Alexander and TV and film producer Margery Bone launched Bonafide in 2010 with investment from Northern Creative Content Fund. It has bases in Newcastle and London.

Besides Talking…, it is co-developing an original comedy for multi-channel broadcaster UKTV with Steve Coogan’s prodco Baby Cow Productions.

Fred Burcksen, ZDF Enterprises’ COO, said: “Bonafide Films is a very promising company with great talent attached. There is a great fit with their development focus and the ZDFE catalogue, and we very much look forward to working together.”

“We very much share the same taste in captivating, high-end productions, so we’re tremendously pleased to be working together on Talking to the Dead for Sky Living in the UK – and for this relationship to now extend into a development one is a very exciting opportunity for us,” added Bone, who brokered the agreement with ZDFE’s Karoline Meichsner-Sertl and Tasja Abel.