U.K.'s Left Bank Pictures and China's CITVC Ink TV Co-Development Deal

Issue 56A - Golden Globes Preview: Kenneth Branagh in Wallander
Courtesy of BBC for Masterpiece

The two parties will come up with ideas for high-end drama for both the Chinese and international markets.

U.K. production company Left Bank Pictures and China International Television Corporation (CITVC) have inked a co-development deal for an English-language drama for the Chinese and international market.

Under the deal, which was announced at the China International Film & TV Programs Exhibition, Left Bank and CITVC will table ideas to select one "high-end" English-language TV series to go into production by next year that would then air in China.

Sony Pictures Television, which owns a majority stake in Left Bank, will distribute the developed project worldwide outside of mainland China.

Left Bank was behind The Crown for Netflix, Mad Dogs for Sky, Wallander for the BBC and Strike Back for Sky/HBO Cinemax.

CITVC is one of China’s biggest media companies and a subsidiary of China Central Television (CCTV), which operates a network of 45 channels available to more than 1 billion viewers.

CITVC chairman and president Xue Jijun said there was growing love and attention for Chinese culture around the world.

"We hope we can discover and create more and better film and television content, and distribute them to audiences around the world through collaborating with outstanding companies such as Left Bank and Sony Pictures Television," said Xue.

Andy Harries, chief executive of Left Bank Pictures, said the company had been looking for opportunities in China for some time.

"It is the ultimate challenge to get into a successful partnership that makes programs which reflect both our and the Chinese culture, and we believe CITVC is the ideal partner to attempt just that," Harries said in a statement.