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Fox’s Pines take root in France

LA SCREENINGS: A French channel has acquired Wayward Pines, the upcoming 10-episode event thriller from M Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable) and Fox.

Fox International Channels (FIC), which has rights to Pines outside the US, has inked its first distribution deal for the show with French pay TV net Canal+.

The deal, agreed during this week’s LA Screenings, gives Canal+ exclusive first-window pay rights to the series in France. It also marks the first commitment by a broadcaster outside FIC to premiere the series day-and-date during the 2014/15 broadcast season.

Aline Marrache-Tesseraud, head of acquisitions/foreign fiction at Canal+, described Pines as “one of the most exciting projects of next season. It brings together highly talented signatures, cast and crew, and is headed by Oscar-nominated director and producer M Night Shyamalan.

“Canal+ will make Wayward Pines available for its subscribers in simulcast with the US broadcast. This acquisition illustrates the strong commitment of Canal+ into TV series pre-buys and acquisitions, and our continuing strength in the international TV series market.”

FIC bought into Twin Peak-esque Matt Dillion drama Wayward Pines earlier this month and will air it across all its channels as a global event next season. It is being produced by FX Productions for the Fox network in the US.

FIC is also licening first and second window international television, non-linear and home-entertainment sales via Simon Thomas, the group’s London-based exec VP of content sales.

Based on the best-selling novel by Blake Crouch, Wayward Pines follows a Secret Service agent investigating the disappearance of two federal agents in the bucolic but mysterious town of Wayward Pines, Idaho.

The series was developed for television by Chad Hodge and is executive produced by Shyamalan, Hodge, Donald De Line and Ashwin Rajan. The cast also includes Melissa Leo, Toby Jones, Carla Gugino, Terrence Howard and Juliette Lewis. See the Wayward Pines trailer here.

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