ABC in the US has ordered the pilot Dark Horse from Universal Television and ABC Signature in association with Keshet Studios.
Written by William Jehu Garroutte, and with Jessica Goldberg (The Path) on board as showrunner, Dark Horse is based on Blackfella Film’s award-winning contemporary political thriller, Total Control.
ABC’s Dark Horse will follow Alex Irving, a passionate Indigenous woman, on her unconventional journey into politics. As Alex reckons with her own troubled past, she juggles obligations to her family, to her culture, and to a political system that's never seen anybody quite like her.
Writer William Jehu Garroutte - a citizen of the Cherokee Nation who most recently served as a story editor on Stumpton for ABC – executive produces alongside showrunner Jessica Goldberg, Keshet Studios’ President Peter Traugott, Avi Nir (Keshet Media Group), Alon Shtruzman (Keshet International), Darren Dale (Blackfella Films), Miranda Dear (Blackfella Films) and Rachel Griffiths.
Alon Shtruzman, KI’s CEO, comments, “We are thrilled to see a property like Total Control – one that shines a spotlight on race and privilege – travelling to the US and evolving in this way. Congratulations to the teams at Universal Television, ABC Signature and of course, Keshet Studios.”
Winner of the Diversify TV Excellence Award (Race and Ethnicity) at MIPCOM 2020, Total Control was recently re-commissioned for a new second season by ABC Australia. The first series had its worldwide premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival 2019 and was screened at Berlinale and Seriencamp in 2020. The drama debuted on ABC in October 2019 to rave reviews and strong ratings.
Total Control is co-created by and stars Academy Award nominee Rachel Griffiths (Six Feet Under, Hilary and Jackie) alongside Deborah Mailman (Mystery Road) – and both were winners of AACTA Awards for their roles in the first series.
Keshet is represented by WME. William Jehu Garroutte is repped by Buchwald.
At present, Keshet Studios has more than a dozen projects at various stages of development or production, including limited and returning series, short-form dramas, and feature-length films. Having just secured a straight-to-series order for La Brea from NBC for 2021, the studio is also co-developing The A Word and Ties That Bind for NBC with Universal Television; Ronen Bergman’s Rise and Kill First with Yuval Adler for HBO; The Stuntwoman with Academy Award Winner Guy Nattiv; and All the Rivers with Gal Gadot and Jaron Varsano.