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Headline Pictures and Scott Free to adapt Philip K. Dick's award-winning THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE for BBC One and FremantleMedia

Philip K. Dick’s Hugo Award-winning novel The Man in the High Castle will be adapted for the BBC. Renowned English playwright and screenwriter Howard Brenton (The Churchill Play, Spooks, MI-5) has been hired to turn the novel into a 4 X 60’ miniseries for BBC1. The project will be co-produced by Ridley and Tony Scott’s company Scott Free Films, Headline Pictures, and Electric Shepherd Productions, the production arm for the Philip K. Dick Estate. FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) and BBC are co-developing the project and FME will have international distribution rights.

THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE, a science fiction alternate history novel, depicts a world in which the Axis powers - Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany - triumphed over the Allies in the Second World War. The project marks the first reunion of Ridley Scott with Philip K. Dick material since the iconic and award-winning 1982 film BLADE RUNNER.

Making the announcement Ridley Scott said, “I've been a lifelong fan of Philip K. Dick. He is the master of creating worlds which not only spark the imagination, but offer deeper commentary on the human condition. Howard Brenton is one of Britain's most highly regarded writers, and his skill as a dramatist will surely bring even more depth to Dick's classic. It's a joy and a privilege to be back in Dick's world and to produce his visionary novel The Man in the High Castle with the estate and with Headline Pictures for the BBC and FremantleMedia Enterprises”.

“I’ve loved Philip K. Dick’s powerful and mysterious book since I was a student,” said writer Howard Brenton. “ It is shot through with extraordinarily vivid images and a wicked sense of humour, while its twists of plot continually surprise. Dick’s vision of a frightening future is double-edged, containing within it a message of hope that, in a world gone mad, democratic Western values will in the end prevail. It’s very exciting and a privilege to be asked to adapt this masterpiece for television.”

“Philip K Dick’s The Man in The High Castle is so timely and this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to adapt this modern classic with Ridley Scott and Howard Brenton,” said Stewart Mackinnon, founder of Headline Pictures. “Who better to bring this extraordinary and chilling story to a young, international audience”.

“The Man in the High Castle is one of the most highly-regarded and influential novels my father wrote. It’s thrilling to be bringing it to life with such a talented, passionate team, and in a format that can do justice to the full scope of the material,” said Isa Dick Hackett, founder of Electric Shepherd Productions along with her sister Laura Leslie.

FME’s Shane Murphy, Head of Acquisitions & Development, added “This project is very exciting for FME and exemplifies our international drama development strategy to work with the best producers, IP owners and broadcasters to develop the highest quality content for the global market.”

Dick’s works have been the basis for blockbuster movies such as the Ridley Scott directed, BLADE RUNNER (1982), TOTAL RECALL (1990), MINORITY REPORT (1992) and most recently ADJUSTMENT BUREAU starring Matt Damon and Emily Blunt to be released in the Spring of 2011. A remake of TOTAL RECALL is in the works at Sony Pictures, and KING OF THE ELVES is currently in development at Walt Disney Animation.

One of the most celebrated authors of the last century, Philip K Dick was published in the Library of America in 2007 and has received literary recognition unprecedented for a contemporary science fiction writer. His more than 40 novels and 125 short stories have been translated into 25 languages.

David Zucker brokered the deal on behalf of Scott Free; Stewart MacKinnon on behalf of Headline Pictures; and Christopher Tricarico on behalf of the Estate of Philip K. Dick and Electric Shepherd.

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October 7, 2010

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