BBC One has given the green-light to a new (5×30) World War I drama series titled The Great War, the BBC’s Controller of Drama Ben Stephenson announced today at MIPTV in Cannes, France. This is the second World War I drama series that BBC One has in the pipeline, with the other being The Ark, which is being produced in house by the BBC.
Produced by Tony Jordan’s indie production company Red Planet Pictures (who are also producing By Any Means for BBC One), The Great War was created by Jordan and is told through the eyes of two very ordinary young men who enlist in a war they expect will be over within months. As the conflict unfolds, so do the boys stories, as they grow up amid the horror of war, and find love. The series will betold in five chronological parts with each half hour one of the five years of the war and, although centred primarily around the Western Front, it will take in all the major events of WWI including Gallipoli, the battle of the Somme, Ypres and the entry of America into the conflict. The five episode series is being produced by Ped Planet Pictures through BBC Cymru Wales Drama, with Tony Jordan and Bethan Jones serving as exeuctive producers. The Great War is set to air on BBC One throughout Armistice Week next year. BBC Worldwide in handling international distribution, and is currently seeking co-producers for the series at MIPTV.
Speaking of The Great War, cerator and executive producer Tony Jordan, said: “The First World War is undoubtedly one of the most catastrophic events of modern history with a devastating impact on human life across the world. Often, the sheer magnitude of suffering during this time makes it hard for audiences to understand the very personal pain that was inflicted on countless families and young men. The Great War follows two young men as they struggle to adapt to life on the front line and fight to survive the terrifying events of war. The story looks at all aspects of the war – from the families left behind to the strategic decisions by generals that led to unimaginable bloodshed and the men fighting in the trenches – no one is unaffected by this global war.”