Tag Archive: Yellow Bird

  1. Måns Mårlind Dreams Up Nick Cave and Thåström into Before They Were Gods

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    Acclaimed Swedish label, Yellow Bird, a Banijay company, today announces a partnership with award-winning director/ screenwriter Måns Mårlind, and animation company Brokendoll to develop Before They Were Gods, a new animation series for the international market.

    Created by Måns Mårlind (Midnight Sun, The Bridge), with the support and backing of legendary musician and writer Nick Cave and Swedish rock star Thåström, Before They Were Gods is a story of a friendship between the two stars as young teenage boys, both completely unaware they will turn into major rock gods in just a few years. The series is about their search for the ultimate truth, everlasting beauty, and cheap wine. Sometimes they find it, but mostly not. Always there, close to them both, is the promise of endless love in the form of the mysterious and beautiful Linnea who they have both deeply fallen for.

    At just 14, they speak like idealistic adults with a discourse bordering on the philosophical. Thåström is a harsh existentialist, political and speaks succinctly. Cave is the opposite, a struggling Dionysian agnostic, and a romantic dreamer who swims in words. It’s set in Sweden, but all dialogue is in English.

    Måns Mårlind says: “This is a dream project that literally came to me in a dream. While asleep, I watched two of my musical heroes as young teenagers, drinking cheap beer while discussing love and the meaning of life. I woke up writing and have been trying to catch up with them ever since.”

    Nick Cave says: “Since I was never in Sweden in 1971 and haven’t ever met Thåström, I am obviously intrigued to find out what we never did.”


    Thåström says: “I always wanted to be a cartoon hero.”

    Stefan Baron, CEO of Yellow Bird says: “Cool and darkly funny, Before They Were Gods will be a unique feel-good animation series for the international market. Måns Mårlind is leading the creative charge, and with the full support of legendary rock stars Nick Cave and Thåström, this is set to be an authentic adventure, with a killer soundtrack and storyline to attract audiences worldwide.”


    Arvid Steen, Creative Director Brokendoll says: “Creating a believable art style for adult animation is the holy grail for any animator trying to break new ground. Måns’ vision to bring the grittiness, detail, and richness of old Swedish comics into the musical worlds of Cave and Thåström is the perfect way to do it.”

    Nick Cave, born in 1957 in the small Australian town of Warracknabeal, has become one of the most iconic artists of our time. Forming Birthday Party and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds in a post-punk era, Cave has been performing music for more than forty years. His latest album with the Bad Seeds, Ghosteen, has been widely received as his best work ever. Cave’s body of work also covers a wide range of media and methods of expression including film score composition, ceramic sculpture and writing novels. Over the last two years his Red Hand Files website and ‘Conversation With’ live events have seen Cave exploring deeper and more direct relationships with his fans.

    Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds is currently performing a 34-date tour across key cities such as London, Berlin, Helsinki, Zagreb, Gothenburg and Paris. His latest film, This Much I Know To Be True, directed by Andrew Dominik went to cinemas worldwide in May, following its critically acclaimed world premiere at the Berlin Film Festival.

    Thåström, also born in 1957, was raised in the working-class Swedish suburb of Högdalen, Stockholm. He played in Sweden’s most famous punk band Ebba Grön, new wave group Imperiet and industrial band Peace, Love and Pitbulls. Since 1989, Thåström has continued to perform and create music, both in a solo capacity and in various bands. In 2021 he released his tenth album entitled Dom som skiner(Those Who Beam), loved by both audiences and critics. Thåström just completed a sold-out tour across Scandinavia and will be a special guest with The Rolling Stones in Stockholm this July.


    Måns Mårlind is well-known for both writing and directing, behind the award-winning Midnight Sun, which has sold to more than 120 territories worldwide, and critically acclaimed series Bron (The Bridge), which has been shown in 161 countries and remade in five territories.  He has also directed feature-length films, including Swedish feature Storm, the Hollywood feature Shelter, starring Julianne Moore, and the Hollywood blockbuster Underworld: Awakening, pulling in over $160 million in the box office. His latest work is the TV series Shadowplay (The Defeated) starring Taylor Kitsch, Nina Hoss, Tuppence Middleton, Michael C Hall and Sebastian Koch which he wrote, directed and co-produced. Mårlind is represented by Zero Gravity, with Agentfirman covering Scandinavia.


    Acclaimed Swedish company Yellow Bird is behind a raft of award-winning local and international hits, including Millennium Trilogy, Young Wallander, Rebecca Martinsson, Headhunters, Occupied and Bäckström. The company is part of Banijay’s network of over 50 scripted labels, led by Lars Blomgren, working across UK, US, Mexico, Australia, Nordics, Germany, Benelux, France, Iberia, Israel, Italy, Poland, and India.


    Brokendoll is an award-winning creative studio with offices in Stockholm, Sweden, and San Francisco, USA. Brokendoll’s creative directors and producers have worked across both long and short form entertainment IP, including the Oscar winning Searching for Sugarman, Her, The 100-Year-Old Who Climbed out the Window, Disappeared, as well as the ground-breaking adult animation series Myggan.

  2. Banijay Rights Sells Bäckström to AMC Networks’ Acorn TV in US and UK

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    Global distributor Banijay Rights, today announces Swedish crime thriller, Bäckström, will return for a second season. Meanwhile, series one has been picked up by AMC Networks in the UK, Canada and US, for its streaming service, Acorn TV.


    The crime drama series centres around detective Evert Backstrom, a man famous for having solved 99% of all cases he has taken on. Bäckström, is produced by Yellow Bird for C More and TV4 in co-production with Film i Väst and ARD Degeto.


    Series 1 (6 x 45’) is based on Leif GW Persson’s novel, Can You Die Twice?. When a bullet ridden skull is found in the Swedish archipelago, DNA-results confirm it belongs to a victim of Thailand’s 2004 tsunami. Bäckström is faced with an inexplicable mystery that even he could not have imagined. Can you die twice?


    Bäckström’s aversion for bureaucracy, the rules, bosses, colleagues, and well, fellow human beings in general, is rooted in his self-image of being a genius and the only investigator in the world worthy of the name. His role as a criminology expert on the TV show ‘True Crime’ has made him a minor celebrity among everyday citizens as well as the ‘riffraff’. He’s adored and despised in equal measures. He leaves chaos and resentment in his wake, but people put up with it because his track record for solving murder cases is unparalleled in… well, the world.


    Premiering on 8th February in the UK, Bäckström, will be available to North American audiences later this Spring.


    Bäckström series 2 was recently announced in Sweden, with filming due to commence in Spring. This time the case is connected to a macabre music box, which it seems to rest a curse on. The six-part second season will be largely based on Leif GW Persso’s novel, The Sword of Justice, with Kjell Bergqvist playing the lead once again.

  3. Yellow Bird U.S. Locks Rights for Krystal Sutherland’s A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares

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    Yellow Bird U.S., a Banijay Group company, today confirms it has optioned the rights for A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares, the second title from Krystal Sutherland. The planned TV series adaptation will follow the novel’s humorous and moving story about finding the courage to face our deepest fears.


    17-year old Esther Solar believes everyone in her family has been cursed with a Great Fear: a debilitating phobia that will ultimately kill them. Her father is agoraphobic, her mother is obsessed with avoiding bad luck, and her brother is petrified of the dark. As for Esther, she is yet to discover hers, and is determined to try and avoid it by carefully cataloguing every possibility in the eponymous “semi-definitive list”. However, her plan is soon upturned when her childhood crush, Jonah, discovers the list, uncovering her secret and convincing her to tackle each and every fear, including the one she was yet to consider… love.


    Krystal Sutherland comments: “I am so thrilled that Esther’s story has found its home at Yellow Bird. From the moment I first spoke with Marianne and the team, I was struck by how deeply they understood the characters and the story. I can’t wait to watch them bring it to life on screen.”


    Marianne Gray, Executive Producer, Yellow Bird U.S. comments: “I was immediately so impressed by how insightful the writing is. Krystal has an incredible voice and a rare ability to explore difficult themes, including mental health and generational trauma, with heart, humor and hope.”


    A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares is being developed and produced by Yellow Bird U.S., with Marianne Gray and Gil Goldschein executive producing. Launched in 2018 as a joint venture between Yellow Bird Sweden and Bunim/Murray Productions, Yellow Bird U.S. is focused on developing premium, character-driven dramas for the U.S. market. Since its introduction, the business has optioned bestselling novel, The 7 Keys, from Swedish internet security expert, Åsa Schwartz, and I Found You, from Lisa Jewell.


    Sutherland’s first novel, Our Chemical Hearts, is also currently being adapted as a feature – she is repped by UTA and Yellow Bird U.S. by WME.


  4. Yellow Bird UK Triggers Book Options on Spotify Untold

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    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.