Shooting Fish and Waking Ned producer Richard Holmes has partnered with Euston Films, the reincarnation of UK broadcaster Thames Television's film division, to co-produce $10m romantic comedy The Farmer Wants A Wife.

The true story of a campaign to find wives for lonely farmers marks Euston's first step in a drive to remake successful Thames TV properties into films. The project started life as a hit documentary series about County Living Magazine's annual lonely hearts campaign.

Euston was behind UK TV dramas such as The Sweeney, Minder and Widows before ceasing production when Thames lost its franchise in 1992. The re-launched division is headed by Simon Jones, commercial director, UK, at Thames TV.

"This project is a perfect one with which to re-launch Euston Films," Jones said. "Richard is an outstanding producer - his credits prove beyond doubt that he has a clear understanding of the elements of successful comedy." "I fell in love with the idea the moment I saw the programme," said Holmes, who has development deals with Momentum Pictures and the Film Council.

"The movie version of Farmer has huge potential to portray both the romance and comedy of 'urban woman meets rural man' without losing any of the compelling character studies that made it such a compulsively watchable documentary."