Gripping Five-Part Psychological Drama Adapted from Alex Dahl’s Best-Selling Novel
LONDON, U.K. (27 June 2023) – Disney+ has commissioned a thrilling new five-part drama, “Playdate”, produced by Quay Street Productions and Brightstar. The series is adapted by Catherine Moulton (“Baptiste”, “Hijack”) from Alex Dahl’s best-selling novel of the same name, and directed by Eva Husson (“Mothering Sunday”, “Girls of the Sun”, “Hanna”). Nicola Shindler (“Nolly”, “Stay Close”, “It’s A Sin”) executive produces for Quay Street Productions, along with executive producers Tanya Seghatchian and John Woodward for Brightstar (“Power of the Dog”, “Cold War”).
A seemingly ordinary decision turns the world of Elisa, mum to two young kids, upside down in this tense thriller.
When her 9-year-old daughter Lucia excitedly asks to go on an overnight playdate with her new best friend Josie, Elisa agrees. After meeting Josie’s mother, Rebecca, she’s put at ease by her charming nature and their impressive house. But when she says goodnight to her daughter, she has no idea that she is about to be thrust into every parent’s worst nightmare.
The next day, when Elisa goes to pick up Lucia, she discovers that the beautiful house was a holiday rental. Lucia is missing. Rebecca and Josie have vanished. What started out as her daughter’s first sleepover has turned into an abduction.
As an urgent manhunt unfolds across Europe, Elisa and her husband Fred find themselves the object of police and public scrutiny. Elisa’s perfect family begins to unravel under the pressure, and long-buried secrets come to light. Rebecca took Lucia for a reason. And as viewers learn more about the tangled lives of these women we will wonder if Rebecca was justified in kidnapping the little girl – and whether she might be better off staying hidden.
Johanna Devereaux, VP of Scripted Content for Disney+ EMEA, commented “Playdate” is a brilliantly twisty thriller with a terrifying, instantly relatable hook. We are very proud to be working with celebrated producers Nicola Shindler, Tanya Seghatchian, and John Woodward, visionary director Eva Husson, and rising star writer Catherine Moulton on this must-see thriller.”
Nicola Shindler, Quay Street Productions, said; “Playdate” tells the story of fascinating, relatable and complex women in a situation that is any parent’s worst nightmare. Catherine Moulton has adapted Alex’s bestselling thriller with a real dramatic sense of story that we hope will hook audiences in from the start.
Tanya Seghatchian and John Woodward, Brightstar, commented; “Partnering with Quay Street and Disney+ we couldn’t be more delighted to move into production with director and executive producer, Eva Husson at the helm. Eva is a multiple Cannes Film Festival contender who is bringing her unique vision to the show and she is directing all episodes. Playdate is a very rare beast - a thriller that combines beautifully crafted edge-of-the-seat suspense with unexpected plot twists and truly powerful drama focused on these strong women who are intent on hiding their darkest secrets from the world.
The series is executive produced by Nicola Shindler for Quay Street Productions (part of ITV Studios), Tanya Seghatchian and John Woodward for Brightstar, Johanna Devereaux, VP of Scripted Content for Disney+ EMEA, Alex Dahl, Eva Husson and Catherine Moulton. James Dean (‘Better’, ‘Liar’) will produce, alongside Eva Husson who will direct all episodes. The 5x60’ series has been adapted by Catherine Moulton from Alex Dahl’s best-selling novel.
Production will commence this summer in the UK and France.
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About Quay Street Productions (part of ITV Studios)
Quay Street Productions was founded by multi-award-winning producer Nicola Shindler OBE in 2021, to make contemporary, provocative, entertaining, and engaging drama for U.K. and global audiences.
The production company, which is part of ITV Studios, builds on Shindler’s reputation to deliver compelling drama, with her previous credits including It’s A Sin, Stay Close, Ridley Road, Finding Alice, The Stranger, Happy Valley and Queer As Folk. Based in Manchester, Quay Street Productions puts the writers and talent at the centre of the production process. Welcoming voices from all different backgrounds, Quay Street Productions promotes a diversity of storytelling working with new and established writers.
Quay Street’s inaugural drama Nolly, written by Russell T Davies and starring Helena Bonham Carter, was released on ITVX in early 2023, followed by comedic-drama Significant Other, written by Dana Fainaru and Hamish Wright and starring Katherine Parkinson and Youssef Kerkour, which also launched on ITVX. Quay Street is currently in production on After the Flood, written by Mick Ford and starring Sophie Rundle, for ITV; Harlan Coben’s Fool Me Once, with Danny Brocklehurst as lead writer and starring Michelle Keegan, Joanna Lumley and Richard Armitage, for Netflix; Men Up, written by Matthew Barry and starring Iwan Rheon, Aneurin Barnard and Alexandra Roach, for BBC One; and The Red King, written by Toby Whithouse and starring Anjli Mohindra, Adjoa Andoh, Marc Warren and Jill Halfpenny, for UKTV’s Alibi.
BRIGHTSTAR is the London based production company founded by Tanya Seghatchian and John Woodward. Tanya was a producer on the HARRY POTTER film franchise, Pawel Pawlikowski’s feature COLD WAR, and an Executive Producer on the Netflix TV series, THE CROWN. John was previously CEO at both the British Film Institute and UK Film Council. Tanya and John most recently produced Jane Campion’s Bafta, Golden Globe, and Academy Award® winning feature film THE POWER OF THE DOG.