Universal Filmed Entertainment Group and Working Title have renewed their first-look deal through 2025, creating a relationship that will have lasted more than 25 years.
Working Title also has a long relationship with NBCUniversal International Studios covering television.
The partners first collaborated on Hugh Grant romantic comedy Notting Hill in 1999 and have gone on to partner on more than 70 films that have generated more than $8.5bn worldwide, and garnered 14 Oscars, 40 Baftas, and numerous other awards.
The latest collaboration was on Danny Boyle’s comedy fantasy Yesterday, and the roster of hits includes recent release Emma., Bridget Jones’s Baby, Shaun Of The Dead, Les Misérables, The Theory Of Everything, Senna, Atonement, Everest, Nanny McPhee, United 93, Hail Caesar!, and Tinker, Tailor Soldier, Spy.
Coming up are Edgar Wright’s Last Night In Soho directed by Edgar Wright starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie and Matt Smith, and Cyrano, to be directed by Joe Wright starring Peter Dinklage, Haley Bennett, Kelvin Harrison Jr., and Ben Mendelsohn.
“Working Title Films continues to lead the industry as global and diverse storytellers,” said UFEG chairman Donna Langley. “Their inherent ability in understanding the human condition allows for individually memorable narratives on screen. Their unmatched filmmaker relationships have led to a wide library of films, all of which we are so proud to have been collaborators. As well as business colleagues, I could not be prouder to call Tim and Eric friends. All of us at Universal look forward to continuing our partnership.”
“Donna, Jimmy [Horowitz], Peter [Cramer], Michael [Moses] and the entire Universal team have been incredible partners, and this new agreement is a testament to the trust, respect and strong working relationship we’ve all built and have come to rely on day in day out which is invaluable in filmmaking,” said Working Title co-chairs Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner.
“The studio has never shied away from taking a chance on mainstream and offbeat stories that had the opportunity to inspire and challenge audiences in Britain and around the world and help shape the global conversation. We’ve also been able to discover some incredible new filmmakers and allowed some more established ones to make films which are innovative, take risks and in some cases have luckily also positively impacted the cultural conversation. Working with NBCUniversal across film and television provides us with the support we need to share our content with the world.”
“Tim and Eric exemplify the notion that stories about human connection know no boundaries,” said Pearlena Igbokwe, chairman, Universal Studio Group. “They create globally resonant content that is embraced in multiple territories, across multiple platforms and we look forward to continuing our television partnership through NBCUniversal International Studios.
Working Title TV credits – the company is part of NBCUniversal International Studios – over the past 10 years include BBC Two and BBC America spy thriller London Spy, Sky One and NBC’s comed drama You, Me And The Apocalypse, a reboot of Armistead Maupin’s Tales Of The City for Netflix, the television remake of Hanna for Amazon Prime Video, and most recently The Luminaries for BBC One, based on Eleanor Catton’s Man Booker Prize-winning novel of the same name.