BBC1’s Cohen Unveils Five New Dramas

BBC1′;s new controller Danny Cohen has lost no time making his mark. While most of us are still shaking off New Year’;s hangovers or fighting bouts of back-to-school flu, Cohen has unveiled a raft of dramas including One Night, Call The Midwife, Bound, Morton and Great Expectations.

Commenting, Cohen said: “I hope that these commissions begin to express the range and creative ambition we want BBC1 drama to capture in the coming years. There are great opportunities here for new writers, as well as a new commitment to blue-collar drama and classic period pieces.”

All five dramas were commissioned by Danny Cohen and Ben Stephenson, controller, BBC Drama Commissioning who added: “This shows the ambition of BBC1. Alongside works by established talent, it is thrilling to have Paul Smith and Julie Geary writing original dramas (for BBC1).”

Call The Midwife is a 6 x 60 mins series, written by Heidi Thomas (Upstairs Downstairs, Cranford) and made by Neal Street Productions. It is adapted from Jennifer Worth’;s best selling memoir. Bound (working title) is a 6 x 60 mins series, written by Julie Geary (Secret Diary Of A Call Girl, Lip Service) and made by Tiger Aspect Productions. It is about a group of women who have lost the men in their lives to prison.

Morton, 8 x 60 mins series, is written by Frank Spotnitz and made by Kudos Film and Television. It tells the story of a female spy “with a bull’;s eye on her back.”

One Night is a 4 x 60 mins event drama, written by Paul Smith and made by BBC Drama Production. Set over one blistering hot summer night when nerves are frayed and tensions ride high, One Night is an original authored drama about four very ordinary but different people whose fates are linked by a seemingly inconsequential event. Each episode is one character’;s stand-alone story, which tells the events of that night from four different points of view.

Finally, there is Great Expectations, 3 x 60 mins. Described as a “bold new adaptation” from Sarah Phelps, it will “give us the heart and guts of Dickens at his very best. Suspenseful and thrilling, this visceral retelling will capture the romance and warmth of the classic to mark his bicentenary, especially for next Christmas on BBC One.”

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