Strong Global Entertainment Inc today announced that its subsidiary Strong Studios, Inc. (“Strong Studios”) (Safehaven, Flagrant, Inside the Black Box), will partner with Convergent Media, UK’s ForLan Films and M-Net to produce the new crime drama series, Endangered. The project is based on one of a series of bestselling novels from the popular South African crime writer, Rudie van Rensburg.
Two-time BAFTA award-winner Stuart Urban (The Mystery of Suzy Lamplugh, The Secret, May I Kill U?) will direct with screenwriter Jake Riddell (Reyka, Grantchester, London Kills, Death in Paradise) penning the six-part limited series.
Based on the novel, Piranha by Van Rensburg, Endangered centres around Montgomery Smith, a wealthy Englishman-in-exile, who runs an illegal, corrupt, and dangerous syndicate smuggling Africa's White Gold, the endangered rhino horn, and the legendary veteran detective Captain Kassie Kasselman, who aggressively pursues Smith from the Cape ganglands to the Kruger National Parks to Pretoria, South Africa's bustling political capital. Kassie must unravel the mystery and stop Smith’s syndicate of criminal gangs and poachers. Endangered is more than just a crime thriller: it's a snapshot of a country that has always lived by the mantra: adapt or die.
“While researching rhino poaching, I became increasingly aware of how serious of a problem it is. It’s a great honour to have such renowned filmmakers helming the production of Endangered, and I'm delighted that this issue will be brought to the attention of a wider audience,” said Van Rensburg.
With the expectation to begin production in early 2024 in South Africa, Endangered will be produced by ForLan Films’ Emmy Award-winning producer Steve Lanning (Empire Strikes Back, Gandhi & Kubrick's ‘God Fearing Man) and Jake Lanning (Pulse, In Deep, Trial & Retribution) and Advantage Entertainment’s Vlokkie Gordon (Black Sails, The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency), along with Strong Global Entertainment’s Chairman Kyle Cerminara; Strong Studios’ President David Ozer and EVP of production and development Scott Weinstock; Convergent Media’s Dan Reardon and Santosh Govindaraju; and M-Net’s Nicola van Niekerk, and Wikus du Toit. Strong Studios and Convergent Media will oversee global distribution, excluding Africa, which will be handled by M-Net/Multichoice Africa.
Strong Studios’ President David Ozer stated: “As we look to continue building our content pipeline to offer a broad range of entertainment, as well as expand into the international production arena, we are thrilled to collaborate with Convergent Media, ForLan Films, M-Net/Multichoice Africa, and Advantage Entertainment to bring Rudie’s compelling novel to life to deliver a series that shines a spotlight on the controversial rhino poaching trade. With Stuart’s vision and Jake’s dynamic screenplay, Endangered has all the facets lining up to produce a global binge-worthy hit!”
Convergent Media’s Dan Reardon commented: “Endangered is a double-barreled shotgun of a story. It’s a fast-moving thriller, yet grounded in important real-world issues, both of which will appeal to a broad range of international audiences.”
ForLan Films’ Steve Lanning and Jake Lanning jointly stated: “Rudie’s series of books immerses us not only in the rich and vibrant African culture, but also exposes the criminal elements that exploit Africa for their own benefit, which reaches far beyond Africa’s shores. We are so excited to be able to bring this story and its compelling characters to a worldwide audience.”
Multichoice’s Georginah Machiridza, Executive Head: General Entertainment said: “As Africa’s leading video and entertainment company we are committed to sharing our stories through world-class co-productions. Endangered represents a unique opportunity for Multichoice to support a project that not only promises gripping storytelling but also addresses a pressing global concern. It's a testament to the power of storytelling to make a positive impact, and we're excited to share it with our audience."