The BBC has commissioned a six-part drama about the UK’s ska and two-tone music scene, which hails from Steven Knight, the Oscar-nominated and BAFTA-winning creator of Peaky Blinders and writer of last year’s Venice-bowing Spencer.

Two Tone

Two Tone (working title) will tell the story of an extended family and four young people who are drawn into the world of ska and two tone music, which grew from the grass roots of the English cities Coventry and Birmingham in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The music united black, white and Asian youths during a tough period for race relations in the UK. Shooting will begin Birmingham at Digbeth Loc later this year.

The series also marks the beginning of a new deal between Knight and Banijay-UK backed Kudos, which gives the Deadwater Fell indie a first look at all of his future UK-based projects. The agreement also includes a commitment to grow the local workforce in Birmingham, using Knight’s Digbeth Loc Studios as a base.

“This is a project that’s literally very close to home and I’m developing characters and themes that are set in the early 80s but hopefully are very contemporary. Of course, the soundtrack will be sensational,” said Knight, who is creator, writer and executive producer.

Two Tone is created, written and executive produced by Knight. Executive producers are Wilson, Martin Haines, Phil Temple and Laura Conway for Kudos; Matthew James Wilkinson for Stigma Films; and Angel and Tommy Bulfin for the BBC. Banijay Rights will handle international distribution for the series.

Feedback for Two Tone

Ben Irving, Acting Director of BBC Drama said: “Steven has taken his knowledge of this time and place and used it to weave a brilliantly original and characterful drama, set against the musical backdrop of ska and two tone. We are thrilled to be able to bring this unique piece to viewers on the BBC.”

“Steven has taken his knowledge of this time and place and used it to weave a brilliantly original and characterful drama, set against the musical backdrop of ska and two tone,” said Ben Irving, acting director of the BBC Drama. “We are thrilled to be able to bring this unique piece to viewers on the BBC.”

Karen Wilson, Kudos executive producer added: “Steven’s passion for this project is palpable so I couldn’t be more excited to be making it for BBC One. Set in the West Midlands, against a moment of real cultural and historical progression, it will be compelling, diverse and will have a rocking soundtrack to boot.”

About Kudos

Kudos is also the producer on Knight’s upcoming series for BBC One, SAS Rogue Heroes. The deal will provide Kudos a first look on future UK based projects originated by Steven Knight and support the Birmingham film and TV industry.

The new partnership is committed to “substantial long-term financial investment in skills and training” in the West Midlands with the ambition of “growing the local workforce, incubating talent and generating a thriving scripted production pipeline in Birmingham”. The partnership has Knight’s Digbeth Loc. Studios as its hub.

Steven Knight said of the deal: “This is a real opportunity to nurture and grow the TV industry in the fertile soil of Birmingham.  We need local people, local locations, local know-how and local stories to help us make world beating screen content.  As a partner, Kudos could not be more prestigious and it’s a pleasure to welcome them into town.  We hit the ground running in the next few months with our first project which is West Midlands to its core, and I am hugely excited by what the future holds.”

Martin Haines, Joint MD of Kudos said; “I am delighted we are building on our relationship with Steve and taking our partnership to the next level in this fantastic way which will have real impact on the production industry in Birmingham and the West Midlands.”

 

Source: www.deadline.com

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