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Netflix Invests in 7 New U.K. Shows, Including the Sam Mendes Directed, ‘The Red Zone’

Fern Siegel

As part of Netflix’s global expansion, the streamer will develop seven new shows with major British names, including director Sam Mendes, actors Rowan Atkinson and Andy Serkis.

All seven productions, part of Netflix’s Original Series, will be written and produced in the U.K. Many of the platform’s most notable hits are English, including “The Crown,” now in its fourth season.

Anne Mensah, VP of U.K. Original Series at Netflix, who will oversee production, stated: “Setting up a team entirely based in the U.K. was always about being able to better connect to the fantastic program makers we have here — to provide a space for writers, producers, directors and actors that feels local, friendly and familiar, but also provides talent the opportunity to make shows that will impact on a global scale. U.K.-made stories really do speak to the world.”

The new projects boast a range of genres.

Sam Mendes (“1917,” “American Beauty”) comes “The Red Zone,” a comedy set against the backdrop of soccer. Atkinson is also involved in “Man vs. Bee,” another comedy, while Serkis will executive produce “Half Bad,” a YA drama about the illegitimate son of an evil witch trying to determine his destiny.

Other productions include “Baby Reindeer” by Richard Gadd, who won Edinburgh Comedy Award Winner in 2016. The show is about his true-life experiences with a female stalker. “Cuckoo Song,” from writers Sarah Dollard (“Dr. Who”), Andrea Gibb and Corinna Faith, is a horror story about two siblings: one human and one a monster.

Also on the supernatural-adventure front, “Lockwood & Co.” focuses on teen ghost hunters in a war with deadly spirits, while “The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle” is a mind-bending murder mystery, based on the bestselling novel of the same name.

Netflix spent $1 billion for U.K. content this year, double its 2019 outlay.

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