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First full account of the passion, people and politics that made William Shakespeare the world’s most famous dramatist to be told in epic multi-part series Double BAFTA winner Sarah Lancashire initiates project which is being developed by Kudos and Via Pictures.

Kudos (a Banijay UK company), Via Pictures and Academy Award-nominee and Bafta Award-winning Steven Knight are to develop a thrilling new drama series based on the extraordinary life of William Shakespeare.

The concept was developed by double Bafta-winner Sarah Lancashire and will be written by Steven Knight. It will be produced out of Knight’s Digbeth Loc. Studios in Birmingham by Kudos, in association with Lancashire’s production company, Via Pictures, which she formed with Peter Salmon.

For the first time on television, the drama will tell the complete and thrilling story of the glove-maker’s son who became the greatest storyteller in history. And how one man’s genius survived and thrived in an age of turmoil and terror, danger and disease.

This is the first full account of the passion, people and politics that made William Shakespeare the world’s most famous dramatist and the men and women around him who loved and laboured, schemed and plotted, killed and connived in one of the most dangerous and exciting periods in history.

The series, which isn’t currently attached to a broadcaster, will be Executive produced by Karen Wilson and Martin Haines for Kudos, by Sarah Lancashire and Peter Salmon for Via Pictures and Steven Knight.

Sarah Lancashire says: “Via Pictures are very pleased to be collaborating with Kudos and the brilliant Steven Knight to screen the remarkable story of William Shakespeare and his contemporaries. This is a thrilling project about a Golden Age beset by plague, Puritanism and deadly politics.”

Steven Knight added: “I’m excited to be embarking on what will be a landmark TV production telling the dramatic story of the world’s most accomplished writer. It’s a period I love and the team that has been put together is extraordinary. It’s a story that begins in the West Midlands and is close to my heart.”

Karen Wilson and Martin Haines, Joint Managing Directors for Kudos, said: “Sarah’s idea has huge scale and high drama, and with Steven Knight writing, this is an unbelievably exciting project which we can’t wait to get on screen.”

This is the third project to be announced from the Kudos-Knight creative partnership, set up to generate a pipeline of scripted production to be realised in Birmingham.

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