Fremantle inks flurry of first-look deals

Winkler Films, Landscape, Mike Tollin among signings

CANNES -- FremantleMedia Enterprises has signed a series of first-look deals with prominent U.S. and international producers and creatives, including L.A.-based Winkler Films and Landscape Entertainment, "Smallville" producer Mike Tollin, famed Brit writer-producer Paul Abbott ("State of Play") and Aussie writer-producer Roger Simpson ("Satisfaction").

The agreements, announced Monday at MIPTV in Cannes by FME chief exec David Ellender, come on the heels of a similar first-look partnership with David Thompson's Origin shingle and development deals with writers like Michael Hirst ("The Tudors").

The agreements are part of FME's strategy to boost its drama slate. At MIPTV this year, the company is pushing the second series of its flagship drama "Merlin," produced by Shine Television and BBC One.
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