Amazon has snapped up North American rights to an Emily Blunt-fronted western from the BBC, Variety has learned.
The streaming giant is understood to have boarded “The English,” which has attached the “Quiet Place” actor as its lead. The multi-part series is produced by “Doctor Foster” firm Drama Republic, whose credits include BBC Two and SundanceTV spy thriller “The Honorable Woman,” as well as Netflix and BBC Two co-production “Black Earth Rising.”
The series is the latest from writer-director Hugo Blick, who broke out with “Honorable Woman” in 2014. The Golden Globe and Peabody-winning drama was one of the first high-end shows to feature actors traditionally seen in film crossing over into the TV space, and featured Maggie Gyllenhaal as a woman who inherits her family’s arms business and becomes mired in a volatile political situation in the Middle East.
Blick’s follow-up, “Black Earth Rising,” aired in 2018, and starred “Chewing Gum” and “Been So Long” actor Michaela Coel as a survivor of the Rwandan genocide who confronts her past.
While plot points around “The English” remain sparse, a western will be new territory for Blunt, who will soon be seen in next month’s highly anticipated sense thriller “A Quiet Place 2,” written and directed by her partner John Krasinski.
Amazon has picked up North American rights to a number of prominent British titles in recent years, including the critically acclaimed comedy drama “A Very English Scandal” with Ben Whishaw and Hugh Grant. At this year’s Sundance Film Festival, the platform snapped up Phyllida Lloyd’s Irish drama “Herself,” about a woman who escapes an abusive relationship to build her dream house, from Sharon Horgan’s Merman and Element Pictures.
The streaming giant most recently hired Sony Pictures Television chairman Mike Hopkins to oversee the retail giant’s video entertainment operations, including Amazon Studios and Prime Video, reporting directly into Amazon chairman and CEO Jeff Bezos.
Amazon and BBC declined to comment.