Amazon Orders First U.K. Original Drama 'The Collection' From 'Ugly Betty' Producer
The show will be produced by the BBC Worldwide's Lookout Point, which is also behind the upcoming big-budget series 'War and Peace.'
Amazon is bolstering its wardrobe with a new period fashion drama from showrunner Oliver Goldstick (Ugly Betty, Lipstick Jungle, Pretty Little Liars).
The Collection, an eight-part series set in the world of French haute couture just after WWII, comes from Lookout Point, the U.K. production company behind Ripper Street and the upcoming big-budget BBC/Weinstein Co. collaboration War and Peace. It was greenlit by Amazon and BBC Worldwide, which took a 35 percent stake in Lookout Point last year.
The series, telling the story of two brothers at an illustrious Paris fashion house emerging from the dark days of the Nazi occupation and into the golden age of design and business, is Amazon's first original British drama and is set to launch exclusively next year in the U.K. for its Prime Video members.
Alongside Goldstick, the show has lined up Emmy-winning director Dearbhla Walsh (Penny Dreadful, The Tudors), BAFTA-winning producer Selwyn Roberts (Parade's End, Strike Back), production designer Alison Dominitz (Casanova, Hotel Splendide), costume designers Chattoune & Fab (Dheepan, Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky) and casting director Rachel Freck (The Go-Between, Life in Squares).
"I’m thrilled to be working with this fantastic team," said Goldstick, who described The Collection as a "passion project" of his for years. "[It's] an entrepreneurial fable set in a pivotal moment in history, where fashion served as the ultimate vehicle for transformation and re-invention. It’s the story of a war-scarred family — upstairs and downstairs — tethered together by its success and its secrets."
The series – which is due to start shooting in January in Wales and France – will be exec produced by Goldstick, plus Anne Thomopoulos (Rome, Borgia, Versailles), Kate Croft (Murderland), whilst Federation Entertainment’s Pascal Breton (Marseille) has signed as French co-production partner.
Croft, who originated The Collection with Goldstick and brought it to Lookout Point under her exclusive development and production deal with the banner, said the show was full of his "signature flourishes" and was an "extraordinary vision" of Paris and the golden age of couture.
"His unique take means we get to peek behind the elegant facade and realize it is not just about the dresses, but more about what they are covering up," she added.
"We’re delighted to be bringing such a smart, sophisticated period piece to Amazon Prime members in the U.K.," said Chris Bird, film & TV strategy director at Amazon Video U.K. "We aim to bring our customers the best international TV has to offer, and we’re sure our members will enjoy this window into the seemingly glamourous world of Parisian haute couture, perhaps hiding a more sinister undercurrent."
Amazon picked up streaming rights to period crime drama Ripper Street — co-produced by Lookout Point and Tiger Aspect — in 2014 after it was axed by the BBC. The series went on to become one of its most successful shows.