'Secrets & Lies' Producers Receive Screen Australia Development Funding for New Series 'Tidelands'

Martin Henderson Headshot - P 2012
Getty Images

Martin Henderson Headshot - P 2012

The Amazon Studios-commissioned series is the first TV drama to receive financing under the agency's new High-end Television Development program.

SYDNEY - Queensland-based production company Hoodlum will develop its supernatural thriller, Tidelands, for the international TV market after receiving development funding from Screen Australia, under the agency’s new High-end Television Development program.

The eight-part series fuses a contemporary crime thriller with haunting folklore and is the brainchild of writer Stephen M. Irwin, Hoodlum principals Nathan Mayfield and Tracey Robertson, and Hoodlum’s head of TV, Leigh McGrath.

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Tidelands has been commissioned by internet streaming company Amazon Studios and will be developed and written by Irwin, who wrote the original Australian series of Secrets & Lies, a remake of which is currently in production for the ABC network in the U.S.

Screen Australia announced its High-end Television Development program in October, aimed at capitalizing on the success of Jane Campion’s miniseries, Top of the Lake, which the agency financed, and the current global appetite for quality TV programming and ideas evinced by shows such as Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, House of Cards and The Bridge. Tidelands is the first series to receive development funding under the scheme.

The program was set up to provide seed funding to support the development of inventive concepts for television driven by an international market. Producers with writer-originated ideas for high-end television series that can attract international audiences can apply for funding to support the development of a series bible and/or first draft pilot script or draft first episode script at any time.

Hoodlum is the producer of Secrets & Lies, which will premiere on Network Ten in the upcoming Australian TV ratings season, and Strange Calls , also in development at ABC. Robertson and Mayfield are currently executive producing the U.S. version of Secrets & Lies.

The original Secrets & Lies stars Martin Henderson as a patriarch who becomes the prime suspect in the murder of a young boy when he finds the body. The American adaptation is being produced by ABC Studios and Aaron Kaplan’s Kapital Entertainment, alongside Hoodlum.