Extra: Model train doc rides to UKTV; Boat Rocker picks up “Covid America”

UKTV orders Hornby: A Model World from Rare TV for Yesterday The new UKTV Original series is an observational documentary following iconic British miniature model maker Hornby. Currently in production, the ...
April 6, 2021

UKTV orders Hornby: A Model World from Rare TV for Yesterday

The new UKTV Original series is an observational documentary following iconic British miniature model maker Hornby. Currently in production, the 10-part series (pictured) follows Hornby’s staff of engineers and model makers as well as collectors and model shop owners.

Based at the company’s HQ in Kent, Hornby: A Model World is a nostalgic look at the modelling company, home to Hornby Railways as well as the Corgi, Airfix and Scalextric brands.

The UKTV Original series has been commissioned by senior commissioning editor Helen Nightingale and ordered by Yesterday channel director, Gerald Casey. The series is produced by Rare TV and the executive producer is Emma Barker. Flame Distribution handles worldwide sales outside UK and Eire.

Hornby: A Model World is currently filming and will air on Yesterday later in 2021.

Boat Rocker Media nabs doc Covid America from The Audio Drama Initiative

The Audio Drama Initiative, known for its audio drama episodic podcasts, has inked a deal with Boat Rocker Studios (a division of global entertainment company Boat Rocker Media) for the international TV distribution rights to its first two-part visual content documentary, Covid America.

Covid America delves into how real people affected by COVID-19 are moving forward. Shot over two weeks across eight states, the two-parter features individuals who have experienced the full spectrum of emotions.

Boat Rocker expects the program will be ready for air by June 2021.

The Audio Drama Initiative launched in 2019 by New York Times best-selling author Lou Aronica and multi-award-winning Broadway and Hollywood producer Mitchell Maxwell. Covid America is directed by Mitchell Maxwell and Hiatt Woods, with Maxwell serving as producer alongside Monty Hobbs, Carl Vorwerk and Valerie Smaldone.

Fremantle North America’s Melissa Harper boards NBCUniversal 

NBCUniversal has added Melissa Harper to its team as executive vice president, production management and operations, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming.

Prior to NBCU, Harper was EVP, scripted production, at Fremantle North America. In her new role, Harper reports to entertainment content chairman Susan Rovner.

The role is brand new at NBCUniversal. As part of her remit, Harper will lead the team that supports all physical productions with external production partners. Additionally, the executive and her team will work in tandem with counterparts at Universal Studio Group to support all internal productions across NBCU’s broadcast, cable and streaming platforms, including: NBC, Bravo, E!, Oxygen, SYFY, Universal Kids, USA Network and Peacock.

Her team will also review production budgets and assess plans, manage asset deliveries, ensure compliance with NBCU production standards, provide oversight and act as a liaison between producers and all internal departments.

Harper previously served as EVP of original production at Starz, where she oversaw all aspects of physical production for original content from development through delivery for the in-house studio and licensed projects. Some of the projects she worked on include Outlander, P-Valley and Black Sails, among others.

ZDF sells history doc to New York’s WNET

Germany’s ZDF Enterprises has sold rights to documentary Magellan’s Voyage – Search for the Spice Islands (1 x 50 minutes) to New York pubcaster WNET.

The film commemorates the first circumnavigation of the globe, which took place half a millennium ago.

Magellan’s Voyage – Search for the Spice Islands, produced by IFAGE Filmproduktion for ZDF in association with ZDF Enterprises, was commissioned for ZDF’s Terra X slot.

The film has also found buyers with Société Radio Canada, Italy’s RAI, RTP Radiotelevisao in Portugal and Discovery Networks in Spain. Elsewhere, the title has been snapped up by public broadcasters YLE in Finland, Russia’s Kultura TV, Poland’s TVP and CTV in Czech Republic.

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