Indian Streamer SonyLIV To Adapt Israeli Crime Drama ‘Magpie’ – Deadline

EXCLUSIVE: SonyLIV has already found success adapting Israeli scripted hits Your Honor and Fauda and the Indian streamer is now remaking a third title from the firm the network behind them, Yes TV.

The streamer is adapting Magpie as a Hindi-language crime drama with the working title Kan Khajura, which means centipede. This follows a deal with distributor Yes Studios.

In Israel, Magpie has run to an 11-part first season and eight-part second on Yes TV. The second recently completed its run to strong reviews and was produced by the network and Tehran‘s Donna & Shula Productions.

The show tells the story of Asa Katz, a man in prison for murder who is released early on the condition that he cooperates with the police as their informant – a role known as a magpie that he also had in jail. He returns to his old neighbourhood and his older brother, who has little regard for his younger sibling, but numerous conflicting interests put him in precarious situations, and he finds himself torn between his life of crime and his work with the police, while skilfully navigating both worlds to his advantage.

Sharon Levi, Managing Director of Yes Studios, said: “We are honoured that this new format deal for Magpie means SonyLIV will soon become home to a third of our drama series. With its key themes of sibling conflict and a desire for a fresh start while constantly being pulled back into an old life, Magpie’s characters and storylines are instantly recognisable – and ripe for adaptation. We look forward to working with the SonyLIV team as it develops the series for its audience and cannot wait to view the final programme once it has been completed.”

We understand SonyLIV will adapt the series in-house. The streamer is part of Culver Max Entertainment, which was recently established as a merger of Sony Pictures Networks India and Zee Entertainment Enterprises, and owns production hub Studio NEXT.

Saugata Mukherjee, Head of Content of Sony LIV, said, “With the Indian adaptation of Magpie, we are aiming to weave global threads into the tapestry of our culture. The character is complex and piques the viewer’s interest with a compelling storyline. We are happy to collaborate with Yes Studios once again to bring forth this highly acclaimed thriller.”

Magpie was created by Adam Bizanski, Omri Shenhar and Dana Eden and written by Bizanski and Shenhar, with Yes Studios the distributor of the finished program and format. The show won Best Screenplay at the Berlin TV Series Festival in 2019 and was nominated at the same event for Best International Series and Best Performance. 

SonyLIV has a library of more than 40,000 hours from Culver Max, and offers original series and movies in languages such as Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Malayalam and Telugu, along with sports such as the UEFA Champions League, UFC and tennis Grand Slam tournaments. The streamer’s most prominent originals include Rocket Boys, Scam 1992 – The Harshad Mehta Story, Avrodh, and Your Honor. Its remake of Fauda, which is returning for an unexpected fifth season, is titled Tanaav.

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