Debutant TV Writer Jonathan Neil Wins Prestigious U.K. Script Prize

"Death in Paradise"

This fish-out-of-water crime series, in the vein of "Monk,"  is set in the Caribbean and stars British comedian Ben Miller as a curmudgeonly cop who hates sun, sand and fun.

Neil's script about 1950s suburban British spies wins the Red Planet Prize, a competition backed by British TV heavyweights' Red Planet Pictures and Kudos Film and Television.

LONDON –  Debutant TV script writer Jonathan Neil has won the 2012 the Red Planet Prize, a U.K.'s writing competition backed by high profile British TV banners' Red Planet Pictures and Kudos Film and Television.

Neil's effort, billed as a darkly comic 1950s tale of spies in British suburbia beat out competition from more than 2,000 other wannabes to win the nod.

It means he will now be mentored by and work with Red Planet and Kudos to develop his script with a view to producing it for the small screen.

The winner was picked by a panel including Red Planet Pictures managing director Tony Jordan, Kudos CEO Jane Featherstone and BBC Wales head of drama Faith Penhale.

Jordan said: "This script was a real page turner, great characters inhabiting a unique world and, as you finished it, you wanted to know what happened next. I read a lot of scripts and you'd be amazed how rare that is."

Launched in 2007, the Red Planet/Kudos Prize has been running for five years and has seen previous winners hit the small screen.

Previous finalist Robert Thorogood penned the eight part drama series Death in Paradise starring Ben Miller, produced by Red Planet Pictures in association with Kudos.

It is currently shooting a second season for BBC One.