David Tennant’s True Life Drama Des Picks Up Worldwide Screening Deals


David Tennant’s new true life drama series, Des, in which he portrays serial killer Dennis Nilsen, has secured a series of deals to be shown worldwide.

The 3 part series, which will premiere in the UK on ITV this autumn, has been picked up by broadcasters in Americas, Australia, Europe and Scandinavia. 


AMC Networks’ streaming service Sundance Now has bought rights for the USA, Canada and the Caribbean. Sundance Now will premiere the series soon after its UK broadcast.
DirecTV has secured rights to the show in Latin America while Stan has a premiere window secured in Australia. TVNZ has the rights for New Zealand.
European deals for Des include a pan-territory acquisition by C More Entertainment covering Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. VRT (Flemish Belgium), Siminn (Iceland), TV2 (Norway), Virgin Media Television (Eire) and BritBox (UK) have also bought the show.
Sally Habbershaw, exec VP Americas at All3Media International, said: “We’ve received a significant amount of interest in this powerful new true crime drama and are pleased to see this now translating into early deals in key territories. Featuring an incredible cast, led by David Tennant in a standout role as Dennis Nilsen, Des brings this infamous case vividly to life, focusing on the investigation and trial, as well as the impact media coverage had on public perceptions.”
Shannon Cooper, VP of programming for Sundance Now, said: “Sundance Now is thrilled to partner with our friends at All3Media International to bring this riveting true story to US and Canadian audiences. With its incredible script and stellar ensemble cast led by David Tennant, our subscribers are sure to love this true crime drama.”
Des sees David Tennant plays one of the UK's most notorious serial killers, Dennis Nilsen. The new three part drama is based on Killing For Company, the biography of Nilsen written by Brian Masters which includes conversations with the killer who would go by the name of 'Des'. David also acts as an executive producer on the series. 

Told through the prism of three men – Dennis Nilsen, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Jay played by Daniel Mays (Line of Duty, Temple) and biographer Brian Masters played by Jason Watkins (The Crown, The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies) – the series will explore the personal and professional consequences of coming into contact with a man like Nilsen.
Nilsen murdered boys and young men in his flat from 1978 to 1983. He was undetected for five years, and it was only when DCI Peter Jay was called to 23 Cranley Gardens on 9 February, 1983, to investigate human fragments of flesh and bone clogging the drains, that the police realised they had a serial killer on their hands.  
Dennis Nilsen was arrested and convicted at the Old Bailey of six counts of murder and two of attempted murder. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, which was replaced by a whole life tariff in 1994. He died in May 2018.
Told from both the police and Masters’ point of view, Des will explore how a man like Nilsen was able to prey on the young and vulnerable in 1980s Britain.  The series will not only highlight the police investigation and trial but also the effect of the media coverage on public perceptions of the victims at the time, raising questions of just how far have we really come since then?
 
Additional cast include Ron Cook, Faye McKeever, Chanel Cresswell, Barry Ward, Tony Way, Bronagh Waugh, Laurie Kynaston, Ross Anderson, Ben Bailey Smith, Jay Simpson, Silas Carson, Stuart McQuarrie, Jamie Parker, Lex Shrapnel, Gerard Horan, Joel Morris, Jonathan Coy, Amy Booth-Steel, Ken Bones, Andrew Woodall and Amaka Okafor.
Filming on Des wrapped in January this year. 
Watch the ITV drama trailer below: 

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