Sky has today confirmed a raft of exclusive, British-made dramas starring of the major talent including Dominic Cooper, Vanessa Redgrave, David Harewood and Kylie Minogue.
The commissions include a drama based on the life of Ian Fleming, a season of films from acclaimed female screenwriters and the directorial debuts of actors Idris Elba, Matt Smith and Marc Warren.
The broadcaster says the new drams form part of its commitment to invest £600 million a year in home-grown programming by 2014.
The new commissions include:
Fleming (Sky Atlantic), starring Hollywood actor Dominic Cooper in the lead role in a series based on the life of Bond creator Ian Fleming
The Reckless Season (Sky Living), a season of five original dramas from some of Britain’s most renowned and critically-acclaimed female screenwriters, including Sally Wainwright, Gwyneth Hughes and Annie Griffin
The return of Playhouse Presents (Sky Arts) this year features the directorial debuts of Idris Elba, Matt Smith and Marc Warren, with Elba and Warren both also scripting their films. The season of dramas – which will be complemented by a further collection of one-off comedy films – has again attracted high-calibre casts including Kylie Minogue, Mat Horne, David Harewood, Anna Friel and Vanessa Redgrave.
Mad Dogs The Finale (Sky 1), a two-part conclusion to the BAFTA-nominated drama starring Max Beesley, Philip Glenister, John Simm and Marc Warren
These new titles join the previously announced series:
• Moonfleet (Sky 1), a two-part family drama adaptation by Ashley Pharaoh (Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes) of the classic John Meade Falkner story
The Smoke (Sky 1), created by Lucy Kirkwood (Skins), following the adrenaline fuelled and gut-wrenchingly emotional stories of the White Watch crew of a London fire station.
Strike Back (Sky 1) starring Philip Winchester and Sullivan Stapleton, returns for a fourth series later this year.
The Tunnel (Sky Atlantic). Ben Richards (Spooks, Party Animals) heads up the writing team based on the format of The Bridge and set against the backdrop of Europe in crisis.
Dracula (Sky Living) based on a script from Cole Haddon, the series stars Jonathan Rhys Myers and begins filming this summer.
Stuart Murphy, Sky’s Director of Entertainment Channels said: ”We’re absolutely delighted to be announcing such a strong group of dramas for our customers.
“These new commissions bring together world-class talent, both on and off screen, and are unique pieces of television that exemplify the scale of our ambition.”