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NBCUniversal continues to play scripted musical chairs ahead of its unnamed streaming service debut next year.
Bravo’s Queer as Folk and E!’s take on One of Us Is Lying are both moving to the Comcast-backed streaming service. Queer as Folk — a reboot based on the British LGBTQ-focused series — remains in development, while One of Us Is Lying is progressing beyond that stage and has now been picked up to pilot. Both Queer as Folk and One of Us Is Lying are produced by NBCU’s Universal Content Productions.
The projects were originally developed under Bonnie Hammer when she had oversight of NBCUniversal cable networks that included Bravo and E!, among others. In January, Hammer, in a major sign of confidence, was given oversight of NBC’s streaming service.
Stephen Dunn (Closet Monster) is writing Queer as Folk, which was originally developed for Bravo in December. Red Productions’ Nicola Shindler, who produced the original U.K. series, is on board in the same capacity. Digital Rights Group, which distributes the format — resulting in Showtime’s groundbreaking U.S. adaptation — will produce as well. Russell T. Davies, creator of the original series, will executive produce alongside Lee Eisenberg and Emily Brecht of Quantity Entertainment.
The new Queer as Folk is described as a modern take on the British series that centers on a group of club-going friends who find support in the gay community following a tragedy.
One of Us Is Lying, meanwhile, was originally developed for E! in September 2017. UCP landed rights to author Karen M. McManus’ book of the same name following a bidding war. Erica Saleh (Instinct) is penning the script for the pilot.
One of Us Is Lying tells the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. In the YA drama, described as a mix of The Breakfast Club and Pretty Little Liars, everyone is a suspect and everyone has something to hide. John Sacchi and Matt Groesch’ 5 More Minutes Productions produces.
The moves occur as NBC’s unnamed and ad-supported streamer is set to launch in 2020 with a mix of scripted originals and library content, including The Office. On the scripted side, the streamer has the limited series Angelyne (based on a Hollywood Reporter feature) and the third season of NBC import A.P. Bio, the latter of which was revived after the broadcaster’s cancellation based on the strength of its digital performance.
The service is also expected to feature film and TV franchises from within the company and other homegrown originals from outside studios. So far, all of its originals — as well as the library title The Office — are from within the company.
Both Bravo and E! currently do not have any scripted originals on their roster but remain committed to the genre as sources within the NBCU fold say both basic cablers are taking a selective and strategic approach to the pricey space. Bravo’s last scripted original — the anthology Dirty John — is moving to NBCU-owned basic cabler USA Network. E!, meanwhile, has not had a scripted original since The Royals was canceled a year ago after a four-season run.
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