'Homeland': Two Russian Producers Planning Shows With Same Title

Homeland
Homeland
 Kent Smith/SHOWTIME

MOSCOW – Russian TV producer WeiT Media on Thursday issued a statement emphasizing that it has exclusive rights to adapt in Russia the Israeli TV series Hatufim, on which Showtime hit Homeland is based. Amid plans for two shows under the same Russian title that means "Homeland" in the language, it also said that no other company can claim the right to make a Russian version.

“Lately, there have been media reports linking other industry players, including Mars Media’s Ruben Dishdishyan to a Russian adaptation of Hatufim,” the company said. “We are officially saying that WeiT Media owns the rights to adapt Hatufim in the Russian Federation.”

According to WeiT Media, the exclusive adaptation rights were obtained at MIPCOM in 2012, and shooting is scheduled to begin in March. Pavel Lungin is to write and direct the TV series’ Russian version, Rodina, while Vladimir Mashkov will play the main character.

Mars Media, launched by Dishdishyan in 2011 following a controversial departure from producer Central Partnership, which he founded and headed for many years, responded by saying that its eight-episode TV series scheduled to go into production next year under the same Russian title is not related to Hatufim in any way.

“We are planning to make a high-budget [series] based exclusively on our own development and an original screenplay,” Dishdishyan told The Hollywood Reporter. “It has nothing to do with the Israeli format, Hatufim. And when it comes to the title, it, just like many other common words, cannot be registered as a trademark or be copyrighted.”

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