Yellow Bird UK, a Banijay Group company, has optioned the screen rights for Spotify Untold (Spotify Inifrån), the gripping and relevant tale of the secretive start-up that evolved to become one of the world’s leading music services, Spotify. Penned by Sven Carlsson and Jonas Leijonhufvud, and published by Albert Bonniers Förlag, the novel is currently in development for a limited series.
Based on tell-all-book, Spotify Untold, the drama will examine how a secretive start-up wooed record companies, shook the music industry to its core, and conquered Wall Street. A tale of tech entrepreneurship, this is a journey beset with egos, obstacles, and betrayal.
Central to the series is Spotify’s turbulent journey into the US market; a chess match between the new kids and the old guard, with Steve Jobs himself stepping in to frustrate their progress. The Swedes had a secret weapon in the form of playboy billionaire and Napster founder, Sean Parker. Jobs, meanwhile, sent in ally and music guru Jimmy Iovine to poach Spotify’s employees to Beats Music, soon to be Apple Music and Spotify’s primary rival. With a number of other obstacles along the way, the show taps into the cut-throat and rapidly evolving industry in which this major player sits as the kingmaker.
Berna Levin, Executive Producer, Yellow Bird comments: “Spotify Untold is the ultimate tale of achieving the impossible and unimaginable. A modern-day David vs. Goliath set in the dynamic arena of the music industry, this is the true story of youth challenging the establishment. With reality trumping fiction at every turn, we will explore one of the greatest and most surprising technological advancements of our time.”
Jonas Leijonhufvud, co-author of Spotify Untold: “We’re very excited. The rise of Spotify is one of the greatest stories to come out of Sweden in the past ten years. It’s a saga of a young founder who came out of nowhere and beat Apple at their own game.”
Sven Carlsson, co-author of Spotify Untold: “The Spotify story is a drama at the highest levels of tech, music and finance. It’s perfect for the screen and Yellow Bird is the ideal partner, with their strong track record in making Nordic stories come alive on the international scene.”
The series will be developed and produced by Yellow Bird UK, with Berna Levin serving as EP and Luke Franklin as Producer. Carlsson and Leijonhufvud will consult on the project. The rights were sought from Eleonoora Kirk at Bonnier Rights.