MIPCOM: ITV Studios' 'World on Fire,' 'Noughts & Crosses' Sell Wide

Noughts & Crosses Still  - Publicity - H 2019
Courtesy of ITV Studios Global

The WWII drama series and the YA drama set in an alternative world are among ITV's top titles at this year's MIPCM.

British TV giant ITV has gotten off to a strong start at this year's MIPCOM, racking up multiple international sales for several titles on its new drama slate, with buyers particularly hungry for its period drama World on Fire and the YA series Noughts & Crosses.

World on Fire, produced by U.K. group Mammoth together with Masterpiece in the U.S., is a look at WWII through the eyes of ordinary people affected by the war. It premiered to a consolidated audience of more than 6 million viewers on BBC One in the U.K. last month. German commercial network RTL, Spain's Telefonica and Huanxi Premium in China all picked up the show at MIPCOM as did Roadshow in Australia. In Korea, the series will have its linear broadcast on Channel A, with KT Corp taking SVOD rights in the territory. BBC First picked up World on Fire for Australia and Benelux.

Noughts & Crosses, an adaptation of Malorie Blackman’s novel of the same name, is a drama set in an alternate world where blacks — called Crosses — are the ruling class and forbidden any romantic contact with the Noughts, the white underclass. ITV presold the upcoming series to M-Net in Africa, More TV in Russia and to New Zealand's TVNZ, as well as to BBC First for Benelux. The series will bow in the U.K. on BBC One next year.

ITV also racked up multiple sales for factual drama A Confession, starring Martin Freeman and Imelda Staunton, which sold across Scandinavia, as well as to the Netherlands (NPO), Australia (Seven), Asia (BBC First) and Africa (M-Net).

“These shows are among some of the most anticipated and some of the most popular shows of the year,” said Ruth Berry, managing director of ITV Studios Global Entertainment. “Indeed, I believe Noughts & Crosses is a brand-defining piece of television and I’m delighted that broadcasters across the world are already coming on board.”