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Roughcut TV ups scripted drama push, signs Fremantle development deal

Fremantle’s Rebecca Dundon and Roughcut’s Ash Atalla

UK comedy prodco Roughcut TV (Stath Lets Flats) has signed a first-look drama development deal with Fremantle, as it looks to scale up its scripted slate.

The collaboration sees European production group Fremantle become the primary home for Roughcut’s drama projects.

Roughcut’s founders, Ash Atalla and Tim Sealey, will work closely with Fremantle’s global drama and distribution divisions.

The deal was spearheaded by Jill Kellie, VP commercial strategy, commercial and international at Fremantle and Tim Sealey, chief operating officer at Roughcut.

It comes after Roughcut and Fremantle worked together recently on psychological thriller Little Disasters, for Paramount+.

Founded in 2007, London-based Roughcut has mainly produced comedy shows such as Big Boys and Stath Lets Flats, both for Channel 4, as well as mockumentary sitcom People Just Do Nothing for the BBC.

However, the prodco is now pivoting into drama series, a strategy that started with this year’s Coma, a Channel 5 series starring Jason Watkins.

Roughcut Television CEO Atalla said: “This Fremantle deal is a game-changing moment for Roughcut as we accelerate our push into drama.

“Our goal is build fast and become one of a new generation of global drama suppliers. And with the success of Coma, and recently commissioned Little Disasters, the work starts now.”

Rebecca Dundon, SVP scripted content, international, Fremantle, said: “Roughcut’s commercial sensibility and brilliant creative vision lead by Ash, Alex and Marianna is making for an exciting slate of original, contemporary drama series that feel in tune with what audiences and buyers are actively seeking, both locally and globally.

“We’re excited to start our drama journey with the highly anticipated Diane Kruger fronted thriller Little Disasters and can’t wait to surprise, entertain and inspire audiences across the world with their wider drama ambitions as these projects move from page to screen.”

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