Noemi Spanos becomes joint managing director of Fremantle’s Euston Films

18 October 2022

As part of her new role, Spanos will continue to further develop the Euston Films slate, working alongside Harwood to produce new scripted television content.

Spanos joined Euston Films at its relaunch in 2014, executive producing the limited series The Sister for ITV and Dublin Murders for BBC One.

She is currently working on forthcoming comedy horror series Wreck for BBC Three. Prior to Euston Films, Spanos worked both within the BBC and independent sector, undertaking development exec roles for BBC Drama Production, Kudos Film & Television and BBC Wales.

Spanos said: “Working with Kate has always felt like a partnership, and I’m thrilled to be turning our working relationship into a joint venture. It’s exciting to be starting a new chapter together as we continue to build and diversify the Euston slate.”

Harwood added: “It’s been a joy working with Noemi since we re-started Euston Films. She is a creative producer of flare, taste and determination and I am proud that she wants to take on the task of jointly leading Euston Films as we build our slate individually and collectively and step up our activity in this exciting drama world.”

Other Euston Films productions include Baghdad Central, a six-part crime thriller written by Stephen Butchard for Channel 4; and Hard Sun, a six-part crime drama written by Luther creator Neil Cross for BBC One and Hulu.

New pictures released from BBC Three’s upcoming comedy horror series Wreck

15 August 2022

Wreck is a tense thriller, mixing comedy with a slice of slasher, set aboard The Sacramentum cruise ship. The series follows 20-year-old new recruit, Jamie, as he infiltrates the 3000-strong crew in a desperate race to find his missing sister. She was working aboard the same vessel on a previous tour and vanished mid-charter. Jamie is initiated into cruise life and gets a crash course on the tribes within the staff: the theatre kids, the mafias and the low-paid workers. For this overworked and underpaid crew, life below deck can be an odyssey of partying and excess… and they remain oblivious to the bloodthirsty murders taking place on board. Jamie is forced to turn detective and uncover the sinister truth.

The series stars Oscar Kennedy (Ladhood) as Jamie, Thaddea Graham (The Irregulars) as Vivian, Jack Rowan (Noughts + Crosses) as Danny, Harriet Webb (I May Destroy You) as Karen, Jodie Tyack (The Window) as Pippa with new faces Louis Boyer as Sam, Anthony Rickman as Olly, Amber Grappy as Lauren, Diego Andres as Jerome, Peter Claffey as Cormac, Miya Ocego as Rosie, Warren James Dunning as Beaker, Ramanique Ahluwalia as Lily and Alice Nokes as Sophia.

The (6×45’) series was commissioned by Piers Wenger, Director of BBC Drama, and Fiona Campbell, Controller of BBC Three, and is produced by Chris Martin for Euston Films, part of Fremantle with support from Northern Ireland Screen. It is executive produced by Noemi Spanos for Euston Films and Tommy Bulfin for the BBC. Chris Baugh (Boys from County Hell) will direct and executive produce all six episodes.

The series will launch on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer later this year.

Wrecked commission announced March 2021

8 December 2021

U.K. channel BBC Three has commissioned “Wrecked,” a six-part comedy horror series from Fremantle’s Euston Films (“The Sister,” “Dublin Murders”).

Written by emerging talent Ryan J. Brown, the six-part series is set aboard a mega cruise ship. It follows 19-year-old new recruit Jamie as he joins the crew in search of his missing sister. She was working aboard the same vessel on a previous tour and never made it home. Jamie is initiated into cruise life and gets a crash course on the teen tribes within the staff who party hard and remain oblivious to the bloodthirsty murders taking place on board. Jamie is forced to turn detective and uncover the sinister truth.

Ryan J. Brown said: “In ‘Wrecked,’ the kills are brutal, the laughs are loud, and the heartfelt moments land with real candor. I wanted to create a piece of genre entertainment that had the savvy teen sharpness of ‘Scream,’ the unsettling atmosphere of ‘The Shining’ and the strange upstairs, downstairs mythology of ‘Cabin in the Woods.’ At its core, ‘Wrecked’ is a tense coming-of-age story about a lost, gay kid from Sheffield propelled into uncharted waters of escalating paranoia and self-discovery.”

The series will be produced for BBC Three and BBC iPlayer by Euston Films, part of Fremantle, executive produced by Noemi Spanos for Euston Films and Tommy Bulfin for the BBC.

Spanos said Brown had a “wildly distinctive voice,” and added: “His blend of comedy, horror and coming of age storytelling has had us laughing, crying and terrified in equal measures throughout the development process and we can’t wait to realize Ryan’s unique vision and tone on screen.”

The series will film in Northern Ireland later this year.

Fremantle will handle international distribution.

Waleed Zuaiter receives Bafta nomination for role in ‘Baghdad Central’

3 December 2021

Palestinian-American actor Waleed Zuaiter has received a Bafta nomination for leading actor for his role in Baghdad Central.

The six-part drama series offers a fresh locally rooted perspective of life in Baghdad following the US-led coalition’s invasion of Iraq. The show is produced by Euston Films and has been released on the UK’s Channel 4.

Nominated in the same category are John Boyega (Small Axe), Josh O’Connor (The Crown), Paapa Essiedu (I May Destroy You), Paul Mescal (Normal People) and Shaun Parkes (Small Axe).

Based on the debut crime novel by Elliott Colla, Baghdad Central follows the story of Muhsin Khafaji, played by Zuaiter, a former police inspector who is looking for his missing daughter and is thus forced to collaborate with US troops.

This is the first Bafta nomination for the Oscar-nominated film producer.

Zuaiter also stars in the coming HBO film Oslo, which is based on the true story of the negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestine Liberation Organisation, which led to the 1993 Oslo Accords. It’s adapted from the Tony award-winning play of the same name.

Zuaiter plays Palestinian Hassan Asfour, a PLO liaison and the associate of finance minister Ahmed Qurei.

The 2021 Bafta TV nominations, which were announced on Wednesday were dominated by British anthology series Small Axe with 15 nominations, followed by Netflix drama The Crown with 10 nominations.

The Bafta TV Awards will be held on Sunday, June 6 while the Bafta TV Craft Awards will be on Monday, May 24. Both will take place in a studio format.

Baghdad Central goes global

1 June 2020

Fremantle has sold Channel 4’s Iraq war drama series Baghdad Central in almost 90 territories.

Fremantle-owned Euston Films’ six-part drama has been picked up by French/German broadcaster Arte along with Spanish pay-TV operation Movistar+, which has also acquired The Investigation and Salisbury poisonings as part of a package.

Arte will air the series across its networks in European French and German-speaking territories including France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg and Switzerland.

Other deals include Canada’s CBC, Brazil’s Globoplay and Russia’s IVI.

The series has already aired on SVoD Hulu in the US, Australia’s SBS and StarzPlay across the Middle East and north Africa.

Starring Bertie Carvel and Waleed Zuaiter, the series is set in Iraq in 2003 and follows Iraqi ex-policeman Muhsin al-Khafaji, who loses his job and home and is arrested and tortured after being mistaken for someone else.

In the UK, it aired to a consolidated average audience of 500,000 (3.6%) in a Monday 10pm slot in February.

“Baghdad Central is an authentic and compelling crime thriller,” said Al De Azpiazu, Fremantle’s Senior Vice President of sales and distribution for French-speaking Europe.

“The gripping storyline is told through a unique perspective that we don’t often see on TV and bought to life by an incredible international cast.”