Amazon Prime Acquires Australian Drama ‘Picnic At Hanging Rock’

FremantleMedia Australia/Ben King
'Picnic at Hanging Rock'

The sale of the period drama that stars Natalie Dormer is largest U.S. commercial deal ever for an Australian television series.

Amazon Prime has acquired U.S. rights to Foxtel drama series, Picnic At Hanging Rock, starring Game Of Thrones’ Natalie Dormer, in a deal that is said to be the largest ever commercial deal for an Australian series.

The limited run period drama is based on Joan Lindsay’s classic Australian novel of the same name. Peter Weir made a landmark film based on the novel in 1975.

Dormer stars as English headmistress Hester Appleyard in the series, which centers on the mysterious disappearance of three schoolgirls and one teacher at Hanging Rock in rural Victoria on Valentine’s Day 1900. It is being produced by FremantleMedia Australia, from scripts by Bea Christian and Alice Addison, with Brett Popplewell producing. Directors are Larysa Kondracki, Michael Rymer and Amanda Brotchie. For Amazon, the series will be overseen by Amazon Studios’ head of international series, Morgan Wandell. 

Picnic at Hanging Rock will air on Foxtel in Australia in 2018. It is a FremantleMedia Australia production made with investment from Screen Australia. The series was shot in Victoria, Australia, with the significant assistance of the Victorian Government through Film Victoria.

Picnic At Hanging Rock is Foxtel's third major Australian drama series to be sold to the U.S market. All five seasons of prison drama Wentworth are seen in North America on Netflix, The Kettering Incident is available on Amazon Prime U.S. and long-running rural drama A Place To Call Home screens on Acorn and American Public Television.

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