FOX International Channels (FIC), the international home of The Walking Dead, has partnered with Homeland’s Emmy Award® winning Keshet International on the U.S. adaptation of Keshet’s newest Israeli scripted drama series Shkufim (False Flag). Writer and Feature Director, Peter Landesman, whose feature film Parkland opens this weekend, comes on board as writer of the American version, marking his debut in television.
Shkufim (False Flag), created by Amit Cohen-Raab and Maria Feldman and produced by Tender productions for Keshet channel 2 in Israel, is inspired by the 2010 assassination in Dubai, where a Palestinian radical was killed in his hotel room. Following the event, the hotel pieced together surveillance footage and passport photographs to implicate 26 international hotel guests and released them to global news outlets.
Peter Landesman’s version, which FIC is developing in house, will tell the story of eight apparently ordinary American Citizens, who wake up to find their faces and private lives broadcast across the internet and television news around the world as suspects in a brazen and dangerous international crime. What seems at first like a horrible case of mistaken identity quickly unspools into a breakneck, psycho-espionage thriller.
“The pedigree and passion of FIC and Keshet make them the perfect creative partners. The espionage thriller is a genre we all know, love and are excited to take to a level we hope audiences will not have experienced before,” said Landesman.
“Our partnership with Keshet and Peter Landesman, who both have strong track records for telling compelling stories, is an exciting addition to our original development slate,” said Sharon Tal Yguado, Executive Vice President of Original Development and Scripted Programming at FIC. “Peter with his background in investigative journalism understands the complexity of the story and has come up with a version that will connect deeply with audiences both in the U.S. and globally.”
“FOX International Channels, with their innovative production models and global footprint, is the perfect partner and a natural home for this project,” said Alon Shtruzman, Managing Director of Keshet International. “Together with Sharon Tal Yguado and Peter Landesman, we have a stellar team geared up and ready to bring the fascinating story of False Flag to the U.S.”
This project is the latest example of FIC’s mission to develop breakthrough character-driven dramas in the U.S. that can translate into global tentpole franchises. FIC pioneered its global day and date release strategy with the hit series The Walking Dead, and replicated since with key properties, including DaVinci’s Demons and The Bridge. FIC’s most recent announcement featured Outcast, a high-profile drama series in development with the creator of The Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman and Executive Producer, David Alpert.
Keshet International has successfully introduced Israeli formats to the U.S. market, including Homeland, the Emmy Award winning drama based off of Keshet’s Prisoners of War. Keshet also has a number of high-profile shows in development in the U.S., including M.I.C.E., a drama from Peter Berg and Sarah Aubrey’s Film 44 based off of Keshet’s series Gordin Cell, and Tyrant, a drama from Homeland executive producers Howard Gordon and Gideon Raff and Six Feet Under alum Craig Wright.
Filmmaker and writer Landesman wrote and directed Parkland, the acclaimed film about the JFK assassination as seen through the visceral experiences of its most intimate, and mostly unknown, participants. He also wrote the film, Kill The Messenger, which was shot this summer, starring Jeremy Renner and directed by Michael Cuesta for Focus Features. Prior to film and TV, Landesman was an award-winning investigative journalist, war correspondent, award-winning novelist and painter.
Cohen-Raab, who wrote the Israeli series, will co-write the U.S. pilot story with Landesman.
Both Keshet and Landesman are represented at WME.
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