DirecTV commissions its first original series

Michelle Clancy ©RapidTVNews | 11-05-2012

DirecTV is taking a page from online over-the-top (OTT) providers, commissioning its own original series in an effort to find content differentiation. It has ordered 10 episodes of an original suspense-drama, Rogue, starring Thandie Newton.

Production is slated to begin in August 2012 and the series will premiere next summer on DirecTV's Audience Network.

As pay-TV providers of all stripes continue to try to steal market share from each other, commissioning exclusive original scripted series has become a trend for OTT players like Netflix, Yahoo!, Amazon, Hulu and YouTube, who have had difficulty in securing the same deep stable of basic-tier content that satellite, IPTV and cable companies offer as table stakes. DirecTV is the first traditional pay-TV operator to employ the strategy.

The show revolves around a morally and emotionally conflicted cop, Grace (Newton), who is tormented by the possibility that her own actions contributed to her son's death. Grace's search for the truth is further complicated by her forbidden relationship with the crime boss who may have played a hand in the crime.

"ROGUE is a powerful drama which represents a new model for the entertainment industry by opening up maximum creative opportunities to assemble a stellar international cast led by Thandie Newton and topline writing and creative talent," said Nick Hamm of Greenroom Entertainment. "We are in the business of making premium contemporary dramas that have mass appeal."