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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

HBO Max Acquires Studiocanal’s Psychological Thriller ‘Possessions’ (EXCLUSIVE)

HBO Max, the streaming-video hub of WarnerMedia, has acquired anticipated Studiocanal title “Possessions,” a psychological thriller series created by Shachar Magen (“Sirens”) and directed by BAFTA-nominated Thomas Vincent (“Bodyguard”).

As an international Max Original, the series will be made available on the U.S. streaming platform in December.

Commissioned for Canal Plus’s Creation Original and Israel’s Yes TV, the series was shot in Israel in French, Hebrew and English. The show was produced by Caroline Benjo, Barbara Letellier, Simon Arnal and Carole Scotta from the leading Paris-based production company Haut et Court TV, whose credits include “No Man’s Land” and “The Returned.” Eilon Ratzkovsky, Osnat Nishri and Keren Misgav Ristvedt from Israel’s Quiddity (“Sirens”) co-produced the series.

“The demand for non-English language content continues to grow throughout the world and I am delighted that this exceptional drama will be available for a wide, global audience via HBO Max and its international Max Original brand,” said Beatriz Campos, SVP of global sales and production financing of TV Series at Studiocanal. “The dramas that we are able to offer our clients are brimming with quality in their writing, talent and production,” the executive added.

“Possessions” was created by Magen, in collaboration with Valérie Zenatti (“A Bottle in the Gaza Sea”). The series stars Reda Kateb (“Close Enemies”) as Karim, a French diplomat who comes to the rescue of a young French woman (Nadia Tereszkiewicz) living in Israel and suspected of murdering her husband on their wedding night. Karim cannot figure out whether the young lady is deeply lost and vulnerable, or dangerously manipulative. Obsessed with this case, Karim will dive into Natalie and her family’s mysterious past.

Benjo previously told Variety that the series weaves different genres, including fantasy, crime thriller and family drama. It unfolds in the south of Israel, near the border where Jewish and Arab communities live.

The show also stars Dominique Valadié, Ariane Ascaride, Judith Chemla, Noa Koler, Aloïse Sauvage, Tzahi Grad Roy Nik and Tchéky Karyo. “Possessions” was developed with the support of the Creative Europe Program.

Rolling off “Possessions,” Haut et Court signed a first-look deal with Quiddity to develop more ambitious series projects. The pair are currently collaborating on “My First Family,” penned by Maya Zaydman (“Our Boys”) and Ori Sivan (“In treatment”).

A subsidiary of the Vivendi-owned Canal Plus Group, Studiocanal is actively developing and distributing multiple high-end series through its network of production companies, including Tandem in Germany (Canneseries title “Shadowplay”), the U.K.’s RED Production Company (“Years and Years”), Spain’s Bambu Producciones (“On Death Row”) and France’s Studiocanal Original (“Mouche”).

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