VS Worldwide: ZDF Enterprises, drama, docs and kids, all in one place

Right before MIPCOM, ZDF Enterprises is promoting already a diversifed catalogue at Virtual Screenings Worldwide as shown of what it will take to Cannes next October 11-14. Market highlights are ZDF Enterprises-Fuji TV (Japan) coproduced drama The Window, to be screened on Monday 11th at 2.15pm in the Auditorium A at the Palais des Festivals, as well as doc series Rescued Chimpanzees of the Congo with Jane Goodall and the animated preschool comedy School of Roars.

ZDF Enterprises, Germany’s top distributor of TV content, is having a strong Autumn with new programming launches, including a vast catalogue of drama series produced all across Europe, high end documentaries and animation shows for kids & teens. All these can be seen at the distributor booth at Virtual Screenings Worldwide on September 21-30. Then, the company will be showing it live in Cannes and MIPCOM Online. 

Fred Burcksen, President and CEO, commented: ‘These unprecedented times meant that many people have had to adapt to a new way of working, so I’m especially grateful to the producers for having delivered the fantastic range of shows that we’ll be launching in Cannes. And I’m delighted that we will be able to introduce our slate to clients in person as the team and I look forward to returning to MIPCOM’.

Among the new dramas are The Window (10×45’), which will have a Market Screening in Cannes on Monday, October 11 at 2.15pm in Auditorium A at the Palais des Festivals with the presence of BAFTA and EMMY award-winning screenwriter/author James Payne, producer Rolant Hergert and the Fuji TV and ZDF Enterprises team. Exploring the complex and dark machinations that go on behind the scenes in professional football, The Window focuses on an ensemble cast of players, agents, club owners, administrators and journalists. The series begins in the transfer season, a period rife with cutthroat scheming. It was produced by German Boogie Entertainment and ZDF Enterprises, in co-production with Fuji Television Network and Belgian Velvet and Streamz

Agatha Christie fans are in for a treat with the first ever adaptation based on the fictional detective of Christies’ fictional writer, Ariadne Oliver. A playful, contemporary whodunnit, Agatha Christie’s Hjerson (4×90’), a modern-day spinoff about Sven Hjerson, a once renowned criminal profiler and Klara Sandberg, a trash TV producer who wants to reset her career with a true crime show that stars him. The series is produced by BR•F, TV4/C MORE, ZDF, Agatha Christie Ltd. and Nadcon Film. From the UK is Channel 4’s crime thriller Before We Die (6×52’, produced by Eagle Eye Drama) based on the eponymous noir Swedish series. Police detective Hannah Laing, discovers her estranged son is an undercover informant in a brutal murder investigation. When her married lover and fellow officer goes missing under mysterious circumstances, Hannah launches an urgent manhunt. From major indie Russian studio START and co-produced with Sreda, comes an action drama set in 19th Century St. Petersburg. Sherlock: The Russian Chronicles (8×50’) gives a Russian spin to the stories of the world’s most famous investigator. It follows Sherlock Holmes as he attempts to track down the serial killer Jack the Ripper, who has fled to St. Petersburg in the year 1889. 

ZDF Enterprises’ unscripted slate includes the new wildlife series, Rescued Chimpanzees of the Congo with Jane Goodall (5×50’), which follows the rehabilitation of a cast of orphaned chimpanzees from recovery to eventually living in a wild environment. It has been produced by Off the Fence Productions with the support of the Jane Goodall Institute for Curiosity Stream in association with ZDF Enterprises. Ancient Superstructures (7×50’) returns for a second series revealing the secrets behind the world’s most famous monuments, such as the Louvre, Angkor Wat and the Hagia Sophia. The documentary, produced by Pernel Media in association with RMC Découverte, Histoire and ZDF Enterprises, takes a unique approach in delving into the engineering mysteries of these ancient marvels.

Underworld (5×50’) is a visually spectacular cave exploration series shot in 5 international locations. At the heart of every film is an investigation employing pioneering 3D laser-scanning technology to solve important cave-related mysteries that range from the final refuges of the Neanderthals in the caves of Gibraltar to the largest caverns on Earth in China. Underworld is produced by Off The Fence for Curiosity Stream in co-production with ZDF Enterprises and Youku, in association with Wingsight. Embarrassing selfies posted on Facebook, YouTube videos that one thought no longer existed, detailed CVs on LinkedIn can all come back to haunt you. Surprise, Supervise! The Prism is a Dancer Show (4 x 90’), winner of the German Comedy Award,  meticulously x-rays the internet profiles of an unsuspecting studio audience. 

Last but not least a diverse and expansive Kids & Teens catalogue, including new episodes of School of Roars, Scream Street and  Zoom – The White Dolphin. First, the animated preschool comedy has now 104 episodes, produced by Dot to Dot Productions and airing on CBBC, the series was a finalist at Cartoons on the Bay and nominated for Best Preschool Show Broadcast Awards. Scream Street (Coolabi Productions, Factory and Nau Productions), in its second season with 78 episodes, is based on the series of books by Tommy Donbavand. Media Valley and Marzipan Films have produced new episodes for Zoom – The White Dolphin (104×12’), originally a French cult series from the 70s that is back, with his best friend Yann, as he undertakes exciting forays around a legendary island in the Pacific Ocean. The CGI/3D-animated series The Muscleteers (45×11’, Caligari Films), for 6-9-year-olds, is all about helping and being there for each other. Traditional values, such as solidarity and fairness, are transported into the modern world and it becomes obvious that they are not old-fashioned but timeless. 

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