Sky 1 is boosting its portfolio of high-quality drama with a brand new crime event series, The Four, from international bestselling author Harlan Coben and award-winning indie, RED Production Company, makers of Happy Valley and Last Tango in Halifax.
The eight-part thriller follows the success of Harlan Coben’s first original story for TV, The Five, which debuted in April on Sky 1 to critical acclaim with the Telegraph calling it ‘a compelling thriller with a killer premise’, the Observer saying ‘expertly plotted with a fine script’ and Heat calling it a ‘new TV obsession’.
The Four is a stand-alone, character-driven thriller that tells the chilling story of an idyllic family community irrevocably shattered by secrets, lies, suspicions and misguided trust. The series was commissioned by Sky’s Head of Drama Anne Mensah, Commissioning Editor Cameron Roach, and Director of Sky 1 Adam MacDonald.
For Sky, The Four joins 12 original drama series already on air or set to air in the near future on Sky Atlantic and Sky 1 including The Young Pope, Hooten & The Lady, Guerrilla, Tin Star, Delicious, Riviera, Jamestown and The Last Dragonslayer as well as returning series including Fortitude and Agatha Raisin.
The new commission follows a successful year for Sky original drama, with BAFTA nominations for The Last Panthers and The Enfield Haunting and record-breaking audiences for Stan Lee’s Lucky Man.
Harlan Coben said: “I am incredibly proud of what we all achieved with The Five. Our goal from the start was to create a gripping crime drama that moved you, surprised you – and had a shocking and emotionally satisfying ending. I never wanted to make a sequel to The Five – that story has now been told — but rather, to start fresh and bring a whole new crime drama to the screen. Working with Nicola and Sky again was essential to ensure that creatively, The Four is brought to life in the way that we have imagined.”
Cameron Roach, Sky Drama commented: ’We are ambitious for our dramas to be much-loved and talked-about events for our customers, and The Five delivered on that. The world-class storytelling of Harlan, combined with strong screenplays from Danny Brocklehurst and high-quality production from Red, is an intoxicating combination. We are looking forward to The Four gaining its own place in the Sky original drama portfolio’.
Nicola Shindler of RED Production Company added: “Working with Harlan on The Five was a fantastic experience and I am incredibly proud of what we created. When Harlan told me about the premise for his latest story many months ago, I knew that it would be just as addictive viewing as The Five. As with all his work, it is utterly intriguing, totally immersive and completely character-driven.”
The Four is an original story created by Harlan Coben and written by Danny Brocklehurst. Executive producers are Harlan Coben, Danny Brocklehurst and Nicola Shindler for RED Production Company.
With more than 60 million books sold worldwide, Coben’s last nine consecutive novels all debuted at No.1 on the New York Times bestseller list. His books are published in 43 languages in more than 100 countries across the globe. His 2001 thriller, Tell No One, was adapted into the critically-acclaimed French-language movie by Guillaume Canet and, more recently, French channel TF1 adapted his bestselling novel No Second Chance into a six-part series that became the highest-rated French TV series in a decade.
RED Production Company, part of STUDIOCANAL’S international network of indies, has produced some of the UK’s most successful and award-winning dramas – from Sally Wainwright’s Happy Valley and Last Tango in Halifax, to Russell T Davies’ Cucumber and Queer As Folk, as well as Lenny Henry’s Danny and the Human Zoo and Danny Brocklehurst’s Ordinary Lies. New series The Four will be distributed by STUDIOCANAL.