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Canal+ commissions historical drama series about army of female warriors

French pay TV operator Canal+ has commissioned an action-drama series based on the true story of an army of female warriors in 19th century Africa.

Françoise Guyonnet

Studio subsidiary StudioCanal is in development on Agoodjie (8×52’), created by Didier Lacoste (Guyane, L’Ecole du Pouvoir, Spin) and Joy Fleury (Tristesse et Beauté, La Fête des Pères), with Nigerian screenwriters Ukamaka Olisakwe, Jude Idada and Adachioma Ezeano.

The series will be filmed in English in locations across South Africa, Nigeria and Benin.

The Agoodjies of Dahomey were an elite corps of 4,000 female warriors who took on the most powerful French army of the time in a bloody four-year war in the late 1880s. The drama weaves together the stories of a young female villager destined for great things and the once-wealthy kingdom of Dahomey, now part of Benin.

Nathalie Folloroux, senior VP of Canal+ channels at Canal+ International, said: “With our investment in African production and our dedication to promote African culture, legends and heroes, we were immediately conquered by the project [from] Joy Fleury and Didier Lacoste, given its authentic rooting in Africa.”

Françoise Guyonnet, exec MD of TV at StudioCanal, added: “We’re very excited to board this fascinating and intriguing story of female empowerment. Set in Africa, it’s a universal story of love, loss, revenge and justice, with strong appeal to viewers throughout the world.”

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