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Danny Cohen backs Bad Wolf

Tranter and Gardner strike deal with Access Entertainment.

Access Entertainment, the media investment firm run by former BBC boss Danny Cohen, has taken a 24.9% stake in Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner’s indie Bad Wolf.

Bad Wolf was launched in 2015 and is currently co-producing the BBC1 adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials in Wales, with New Line Cinema.

Bad Wolf also has Welsh government backing and is based in South Wales and Los Angeles.

The investment is intended to provide “further support to fast-track its already burgeoning scripted productions and grow its business globally”.

In addition to His Dark Materials, Bad Wolf’s slate includes an adaptation of Deborah Harkness’ A Discovery of Witches for Sky, and a project based on Warlord Chronicles by Bernard Cornwell. A broadcaster is yet to be announced for the latter.

Chief executive Tranter said: “This investment is a fantastic endorsement of our vision for Bad Wolf and the Welsh government’s strategy for the industry. Access Entertainment is a bold and ambitious company which shares our appetite for drama of scale”.

She said the opportunity to work with Cohen and Access Entertainment’s billionaire owner Len Blavatnik was “absolutely central to our decision”.

“We have had a long and productive relationship with Danny over the years, and Len is a true visionary who immediately understood what Bad Wolf stands for,” she said.

Tranter and Gardner were in charge of BBC drama commissioning before moving to the US in 2009, and were responsible for reigniting the Welsh television industry a decade ago with Doctor Who and Torchwood.

Through their US production venture, they produced three series of Starz’s fantasy drama Da Vinci’s Demons at Swansea’s Bay Studios.

This article first appeared on Screen’s sister publication Broadcast.

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