A+E lays down Roots in Cannes

A+E will give its upcoming drama series Roots its international launch at MIPCOM next week.

Un-RealThe period miniseries, about slavery in the US, is a reworking of the iconic 1970s ABC series, which was based on the Alex Haley novel Roots: The Saga of an American Family.

The 4x2hrs series, which stars Laurence Fishburne, will run across the A&E, History and Lifetime channels next year.

It is one of A+E’s big drama launches at the market. The other scripted offerings include Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. Along with Toots, it will be distributed under the A+E Studios International banner.


A+E will also have a second season on its popular drama series UnReal. The Lifetime series is set against the background of a reality TV series and has fared well in the US.

A+E has launched its own US studio and ramped up its drama offerings, which debut on its US cable channels before launching internationally.

UnReal stars Shiri Appleby and Constance Zimmer will be in Cannes to promote their show, as will Sarah Phelps, one of the stars of And Then There Were None.

“A year after launching A+E Studios International, our slate of premium scripted series, events and movies continues to grow,” said Joel Denton, managing director, international content sales & partnerships.

He added: “Our programs are attracting the A-list talent that our clients and their viewers demand, both in front of and behind the camera. We are very pleased to be joined at MIPCOM by Shiri, Constance and Sarah, who are graciously helping spread the word about their respective projects.”

A+E said it will also have early-stage talks about upcoming drama series including Knights Templar series Knightfall.