Fraud drama revealed after Panama papers

Scripted-logo-460_2David RaymondA thriller drama about high stakes money laundering is the first fruit of Zodiak Rights’ development partnership with UK indie Arise Pictures.

Billed as Casino Royale meets Wall Street, The Cleaners’ creation comes as the explosive revelations of the leaked ‘Panama papers’, which have implicated thousands of people for using companies to avoid paying taxes and concealing money.

“This new drama could not be more topical after the recent leak of the Panama papers, highlighting how and where heads of state hide their money around the world,” said Caroline Torrance, head of scripted at Banijay Group-owned Zodiak Rights. “It’s a highly commercial show, exploring relevant international themes with engaging intimate characters at its core.”

Zodiak Rights entered into a development deal with Arise, whose owner David Raymond (pictured) wrote and created The Cleaners, last month. The distributor expects the pact to be worth US$150 million in scripted content.

Spanish prodco Arcadia Motion Pictures and UK-based Propulsion Pictures are also coproducers on the project, with further parties “to be announced shortly”.

The 10x60mins series will follow an illegal group of money launderers taking money out of the Middle East as part of a clandestine initiative to facilitate regime change in the region.

“We’re using the incredible locations of the Canary Islands and mainland Spain to double for much of the Middle East,” said Ibon Cormenzana, CEO, Arcadia. “We’ve got some exceptional crews who are gearing up for quite a thrill ride. It’s always fun working on a show that’s very Bond-esq.”

Casting is underway, with production planned to begin later this year.

No broadcast partners have been announced at this stage.