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Viaplay brings in The Professionals

Nordic SVoD service Viaplay has commissioned an English-language action series starring Brendan Fraser (The Mummy) and Tom Welling (Smallville), with German broadcaster RTL2 pre-buying the free TV rights.

Brendan Fraser

The Professionals is set against a backdrop of international espionage and corporate sabotage amid a privately-funded space race. It is loosely based on Roadside Attractions’ feature film Soldiers of Fortune.

Munich-based Tele München Group (TMG), which owns a 31.5% stake in RTL2, is handling worldwide sales via its subsidiary TM International for the 10-episode first season.

TMG was bought in February by New York-based investment firm KKR, which went on to buy fellow German media firm Wiedemann & Berg in April. The resulting group, which also owns Universum Film and i&u TV, is led by CEO Fred Kogel.

The Professionals is produced by Most Media, Subotica, Spier Films Production and Roadside Attractions in association with Jeff Most Productions, Highbridge Production and TMG. The show is owned by NENT Group’s Viaplay, with filming taking place in Ireland and South Africa.

Tom Welling

It has been created by Jeff Most (The Crow), who produced Soldiers of Fortune. Michael Colleary (Lara Croft: Tomb Raider) is the showrunner, head writer and exec producer. Most is also exec producing, alongside Tristan Orpen Lynch, Michael Auret, Howard Cohen, Eric d’Arbeloff, Jennifer Berman, Herbert L Kloiber, Thomas Augsberger, Cosima von Spreti, Daniel Wagner, Maxim Korostyshevsky, Bharat Nalluri, Fredrik Ljungberg, Elena Anaya, Fraser and Welling.

“This is the kind of television that couldn’t be more timely or topical as it imagines billionaires using their wealth to deploy private military units to achieve their political and business goals,” said Most.

Herbert L Kloiber, MD of TM International, said: “With this incredible international cast, this is the kind of action series that has enormous global appeal and we have already seen interest for The Professionals overseas.”

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