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Banijay UK scripted prodco launches with Symonds

Scripted-logo-460_2Jolyon Symonds_190717_JoelBanijay Group has launched a second scripted production company in the UK with British producer Jolyon Symonds.

Fearless Minds will sit alongside BlackLight TV in the Banijay UK scripted stable.

It will be a joint venture with Symonds, who will develop and produce “memorable, distinctive, original stories for the UK and international market” as managing director.

Banijay has upped its efforts in scripted after former Lagardere TV chief Takis Candilis became head of scripted at Banijay.

Symonds was previously part of UK-based drama prodco On The Corner Entertainment, which he ran with The Walking Dead and Thorne actor David Morrissey, producer James Gay Rees and director Asif Kapadia.

Symonds is best known as a producer of Thorne, which was for Sky 1 in the UK, and British comedy film Kevin and Perry Go Large. He also produced Danny Brocklehurst’s The Driver for BBC One.

He said Banijay had impressed him with “the level of its ambition and commitment to having a significant presence in the scripted arena”.

“The creation of Fearless Minds shows, once again, Banijay Group’s desire to strengthen its position in the scripted genre in the UK, and in each of the eleven countries where our companies produce fiction,” said Candilis.

Bnaijay’s scripted series include English-language Canal+ drama Versailles, fellow French dramas The Returned and Braquo, Stan’s Australian horror Wolf Creek, Scandinavian suspense thriller Occupied, BBC One’s Wallander, MIPDrama Screenings winner Public Enemy, and Irish period drama Rebellion.

Former Warner Bros. International Television Production business affairs chief Peter Langenberg became COO of Banijay last October, handing him control of UK, the Netherlands, Belgium, Russia, Germany and India.