The Frankenstein Chronicles: Netflix Nabs Rights to Sean Bean Series

frankenstein chronicles netflix series
Credit: ITV

Netflix is hoping that they're cobbling together the makings of another genre success, with the streaming service giant set to bring ITV's cult hit The Frankenstein Chronicles both stateside and to a number of international markets. Executive produced by Frank Doelger (Game of Thrones), both six-episode seasons of the Sean Bean-starring series will be run as a Netflix Original in the U.S.

Outside of The States, Variety reports exclusively that things get a bit more complicated. Show distributor Endemol Shine International had already established separate licensing deals with a number of territories prior to the deal. In those areas, Netflix will still have broadcasting rights but at a later broadcast time.

Originally airing on ITV's Encore channel in the U.K., here's your look at The Frankenstein Chronicles:

A re-imagining of Mary Shelley's classic 1818 novel Frankenstein, The Frankenstein Chronicles follows river police officer Inspector John Marlott (Bean) as he uncovers a corpse made up of body parts from eight missing children, and sets about determining the identity of the person responsible. Bean is joined in the series by Tom Ward (Home Secretary Sir Robert Peel) and Anna Maxwell Martin (Mary Shelley).

Netflix's acquisition of The Frankenstein Chronicles comes at a time when ITV is closing its linear service, shifting some of its programming slate (including Harlots and Houdini & Doyle) and to a collective pay-TV channel. Though the show has been well-received by audiences and critics alike, The Frankenstein Chronicles has suffered from modest viewership. The move to Netflix is expected to be a major boost for the Rainmark Films produced series, and also includes the option to continue the series with additional seasons.

Even though the series is a historical thriller-drama, Bean still sees political parallels with the real world of 2017:

"There's a lot about this story that resonates today […] From the social issues to the cover-ups. It all sounds familiar and nothing's changed. Which whitewash do you want to talk about? Jimmy Savile and Margaret Thatcher making him a sir? It's something that's systematic about the behaviour of those in power, who are protected and untouchable. It's good to see them exposed."

About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.

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