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ITV buys Mammoth Screen

UK commercial broadcaster ITV has confirmed the acquisition of Poldark producer Mammoth Screen after C21 broke the news earlier today.

Poldark joins the ITV stable

Poldark joins the ITV stable

ITV paid £1m (US$1.5m) for 25% of the UK indie in June 2008 but has now bought the remaining 75% of the business for an undisclosed sum.

Mammoth had reportedly been looking for potential buyers recently, with ITV and superindie All3Media – which recently bought Neal Street Productions – considered frontrunners.

ITV’s acquisition of the company will see Mammoth co-founder Michele Buck step down as joint MD, while staying on as exec producer on a number of series.

Fellow co-founder Damien Timmer will now lead the business as MD, having been head of drama for ITV Productions prior to establishing Mammoth.

“Damien and the team are one of the most impressive and sought after drama producers in Britain,” said ITV Studios UK MD Julian Bellamy. “From Endeavour to Poldark, they’ve an uncanny knack of developing hit after hit.”

Timmer added: “This move will allow Mammoth to make even more ambitious drama, working with the best creative talent in the business. We have a long history with ITV Studios, and with its support and backing we’ll be able to make television for a wide range of partners both at home and abroad, whilst remaining a very British television company.”

Mammoth’s slate includes Endeavour and Monroe for ITV, plus Parade’s End for BBC2, Opposite Number for Channel 4, Tripped for E4 and Book of the Dead for The Weinstein Company.

Last month, ITV commissioned Mammoth to make an eight-part historical drama series focusing on the life of Queen Victoria.

ITV Studios Global Entertainment represented Poldark at MipTV in April and secured a deal with Swedish public broadcaster SVT.

Mammoth marks the latest acquisition in ITV’s ongoing buying spree, which has recently seen John de Mol’s Talpa Media join the fold, along with Leftfield Pictures, Gurney Productions, High Noon Entertainment, Thinkfactory Media and Diga Vision in the US.

It comes as the broadcaster is said to have cooled its interest in buying out The Weinstein Company’s TV division.

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