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Cottonwood Media partners with ZDF, ZDF Enterprises, HBO Max and Globo to launch production of the magical premium period live action kids' series THEODOSIA

Federation Kids & Family and ZDF Enterprises to handle global distribution

Friday, 26th February 2021)

Premium kids content producer Cottonwood Media and leading broadcasters ZDF, ZDF Enterprises, HBO Max and Globo have joined forces to co-produce the magical period Egyptology-themed adventure live action kids’ series THEODOSIA.

Set in 1906 and based on the highly-acclaimed books by New York Times best-selling author Robin L. LaFevers, THEODOSIA (26 x 30’) follows a young fearless girl who lives and breathes Egyptology at the turn of the century.  Alongside her feminist archaeologist mother and her father who runs a museum, Theodosia is a special girl whose powers enable her to see and transform ancient curses in a series of exciting magical adventures. 

With filming scheduled to commence April 2021, this premium live action series will be shot in a cinematic style in France and Belgium, and will be directed by Matthias Hoene (Cockneys vs Zombies, The Warriors Gate) who will be joined by other talented directors such as Alex Jacob (Hollyoaks, Doctors).

Casting is well underway from an impressive talent pool of young up-and-coming actors, some of who featured in major primetime series and feature films for the likes of HBO, and Universal Pictures to name a few.  British actress Eloise Little (His Dark Materials, Father Brown) takes the lead role as Theodosia, and joins other cast members Nana Agyeman-Bediako (Come Away, The State, The Huntsman: Winter’s War) as Will, her close friend and a magician, and Yasmina El-Abd (Daughters of Abdul-Rahman) as Safiya.  Also introducing Frankie Minchella as Theo’s younger brother Henry. 

Executive Producers for THEODOSIA are Emmy award-winning Joe Williams (Hank Zipzer’s Christmas Catastrophe, Young Dracula, Eve) and Leila Smith (Find Me in Paris, Lockout).  The series is produced by Cottonwood Media’s David Michel, Cécile Lauritano and Zoé Carrera Allaix

Joe Williams who is the head writer for the series commented: “When I first read ‘Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos’, I instantly fell in love with the world Robin LaFevers created. It’s been a real privilege and a lot of fun adapting the books for the screen with the help of a wonderful team. It has everything a writer could wish for - magic, mystery and Mummies!”

Federation Kids & Family (key distributor of Cottonwood Media’s content) and ZDF Enterprises will handle worldwide sales.

Nicole Keeb, Head of International Co-productions and Acquisitions, Children and Youth, ZDF, is delighted: “It was a long way from the first idea to realize the successful THEODOSIA books for television to the start of shooting. But the work, effort and patience have paid off. Together with our international partners, we focus on big stories and big pictures. THEODOSIA is to continue our successful ZDF live action productions such as H2O, Mako Mermaids, The worst witch and, of course, Find Me in Paris.”

Arne Lohmann, VP ZDFE.junior, ZDF Enterprises, adds:After the successful cooperation during three seasons of Find Me in Paris, it was only logical to realize the book adaptation of THEODOSIA jointly with Cottonwood. I am sure that THEODOSIA will build on the success of the book series as a TV adaptation and will inspire generations of children."

Co-founders of Cottonwood Media, David Michel, Cécile Lauritano & Zoé Carrera Allaix said: “Cottonwood’s German production office and ZDF originally spotted the potential for the Theodosia books to be made into a TV series, especially as Ancient Egypt has always been shrouded in mystery, and intrigue that appeals to kids and adults of all ages.  Working with such exceptional broadcast partners and talent, THEODOSIA will provide an amazing visual experience for the whole family.  Whether she is breaking curses or using her magic to extinguish negative powers, Theo’s adventures will ignite a passion for adventure and leave viewers craving more.”

Ana Carolina Lima, Head of Content at Globoplay said: “We are extremely happy with this partnership. THEODOSIA is Globoplay's first international children's live-action co-production. For this project we also had the essential support from Globo’s channels Kids Unit –Gloob and Gloobinho – both in curation and in artistic development. We are very enthusiastic and confident that THEODOSIA will be another high-quality production that will soon be available on Globoplay and has great potential for engaging and amusing the Brazilian families.”

Set in 1906, THEODOSIA (26 x 30’) centres around a smart, bold 14-year-old named Theodosia Throckmorton (aka Theo), the daughter of two intrepid Egyptologists, excavating in the Valley of the Kings. When Theo and her younger brother, invention-mad Henry, stumble upon a hidden tomb and a mysterious artefact, the ‘Eye of Horus’, Theo unlocks the power to see and perform true magic, thus discovering a whole new world of mystery as well as danger.  Now, from her parent’s home, the world-famous Museum of Legends and Antiquities in the heart of Edwardian London, Theo must do battle with ancient forces, dark magic and comic chaos as she and Henry, along with their friends, street magician Will and Egyptian Princess Safiya, try to survive teenage life, get through education and….save the whole world!  

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About Cottonwood Media:

Cottonwood Media was founded by David Michel, Zoé Carrera Allaix & Cécile Lauritano. Cottonwood Media creates, produces and invests in premium, talent-driven content with a focus on bringing together North American and European audiences, on both linear and non-linear platforms.  In 2015 Cottonwood Media partnered with Federation Entertainment to form Federation Kids & Family, a global kids division which distributes original content as well as third party acquisitions. Based in Paris and Berlin, with offices in Los Angeles and Toronto, Cottonwood’s productions include the preschool series The Ollie and Moon Show, the animated comedy Squish for 6-10 year olds, teen drama Find Me in Paris (a premium live action series co-produced with ZDF, ZDF Enterprises, Be-Films and the Opera National de Paris), now with 3 seasons; as well as feature films such as Around the World in 80 Days, distributed by Studio Canal. www.cottonwood.tv

About Federation Kids & Family:

Federation Kids and Family is the kid’s division of Federation Entertainment, a leading global media powerhouse specializing in high-end programming for the global TV market.  Federation Kids & Family distributes premium original content from Cottonwood media (a subsidiary of Federation Entertainment) as well as third party content from leading production entities, covering animated series and specials, as well as talent-driven live action drama series, with titles such as Presto! School of Magic (TEAMTO), The Ollie and Moon Show, Squish (COTTONWOOD MEDIA), Find Me in Paris (COTTONWOOD MEDIA), The Star of Andra and Tati, (RAI Ragazzi/Lacardarte), and more.  Federation Kids & Family also focuses on building strategic partnerships and alliances with major international companies and broadcasters. https://fedent.com/kids-and-family/

About ZDF (Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen): 

ZDF is Germany’s national public television broadcaster and has been broadcasting since 1st April 1963. It also operates the two thematic channels ZDFneo and ZDFinfo. In partnership with other public broadcasters, ZDF jointly operates the internet-only offer funk, the German channels PHOENIX and KiKA, and the European channels 3sat and ARTE. The corporation has a permanent staff of 3,600 plus a similar number of freelancers. Since March 2012, ZDF has been headed by Director-General Thomas Bellut. ZDF is based in Mainz, but also maintains permanent bureaus in the 16 Länder capitals as well as special editorial and production facilities in Berlin. For international coverage, ZDF has foreign correspondents operating in 19 permanent bureaus worldwide. ZDF offers full-range generalist programming with a mix of information, education, arts, entertainment and sports. Its coverage provides both a broad view on the world and a comprehensive picture of Germany and, in this way, ZDF strives to offer the highest possible public service value. Website: www.zdf.de

About HBO Max:
HBO Max® is WarnerMedia’s direct-to-consumer offering, with 10,000 hours of curated premium content. HBO Max offers best in class quality entertainment, featuring the greatest array of storytelling for all audiences with the iconic brands of HBO, Warner Bros., DC, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Turner Classic Movies and much more. Most HBO subscribers in the U.S. have access to HBO Max as part of their HBO subscription and can visit HBOMax.com for more details.

About ZDF Enterprises:
ZDF Enterprises was founded in 1993 and is responsible for worldwide program distribution, international co-productions, program acquisition as well as the merchandising of strong program brands in its own name, for broadcaster ZDF, and for third parties. Bound into a strong group of 18 subsidiaries and affiliated companies, ZDF Enterprises manages the largest German-language program stock worldwide and an impressive portfolio of international productions, consisting of series and miniseries, TV movies, documentaries and children’s programs. ZDF Enterprises provides a comprehensive, full-service offering and covers every step in the chain of creation and exploitation of successful content, from development to production and marketing. Website: www.zdf-enterprises.de

About Globoplay:

Globoplay is Brazil’s largest video streaming platform, offering free and exclusive content to subscribers. With more than 100 million hours of online videos watched per month, the service brings together Globo original content and Brazilian independent production companies, renowned international films and series, including exclusive productions available only for online streaming. The platform also includes the full offer of Globo’s linear channels through Globoplay + Live Channels, which bring together in one single place, besides TV Globo, cable channels like Multishow, Globonews, Sportv 1, Sportv 2, Sportv 3, GNT, Viva, Gloob, Gloobinho, Off, Bis, Mais Na Tela, Megapix, Universal TV, Studio Univesral, SYFY, Canal Brasil and Futura. An all-in-one platform, with the most complete and varied offer of content for the public to access on any device, at any time, wherever they are.

For media enquiries please contact:

Valérie Tailland, ​Federation Kids & Family​, ​​valerie.tailland@fedent.com, ​Tel: +33 (6) 82 57 06 09

Céline Xerri-Brook, Magena Media, celine@magena-media.com, Tel: +44 (0)7957 334228

Contact

Christine Denilauler

Christine Denilauler

Vice President Marketing and Corporate Communications

Phone
+49 (0) 6131 / 991–1130
Fax
+49 (0) 6131 / 991–2130
E-Mail
christine.denilauler@zdf-enterprises.de
Address
ZDF Enterprises GmbH
Erich-Dombrowski-Str. 1
55127 Mainz | Germany