EXCLUSIVE: Fauda and Shtisel producer-distributor Yes Studios has quietly begun production in Israel on big-canvas drama The Beauty Queen Of Jerusalem, which marks its biggest investment to date.
Set in the early-mid 20th century, the ambitious series will chart the passionate and tragic history of a family living through the Ottoman Empire, The British Mandate and Israel’s War of Independence. The multi-generational historical melodrama will shoot across the country in Hebrew, English, Ladino and Arabic.
Adapted from Sarit Yishai-Levy’s bestselling novel of the same name, the drama will be among the most expensive series to come out of Israel. Yes TV has commissioned an initial two seasons with the first set to air in early 2021. Among shooting destinations will be the cities of Jerusalem, Safed and Acre. Today, we can also reveal two first-look images of the production.
The series will feature a starry cast, including Michael Aloni (Shtisel), Hila Saada (The Baker & The Beauty), Itzik Cohen (Fauda) and Yuval Scharf (McMafia) as well as newcomer Swell Ariel Or who will play Luna Armoza, the beauty queen of Jerusalem. Also among cast are Ellie Steen, Moris Cohen, Irit Kaplan, Israel Ogalbo, Tamir Ginsburg, Tom Hagi, Omer Dror, Miki Kam, and Dov Navon.
The drama was created by Shlomo Mashiach and Ester Namdar Taman and is written by Shlomo Mashiach (Your Honor) and directed by Oded Davidoff. Producers are Dafna Prenner and Shai Eines from Artza Production. Yes Studios will distribute.
Danna Stern, Managing Director of Yes Studios said: “We have all fallen in love with the story of the Armoza family and cannot wait to see it materialize on screen. The initial two-season order is a show of confidence in the story-telling abilities of all involved. This series is a big departure from our usual fare as this is one the only period pieces ever produced in the country, but we are hopeful that audiences worldwide will feel the same as we do and join us on this adventure”.
Dafna Prenner, Co-CEO of ARTZA productions added: ”After years of watching with envy costume dramas from around the world, we feel lucky to be able to produce a period drama that will bring to the screen the rarely seen sights and sounds of early 20th century Jerusalem. From acquiring the rights to Israel’s best selling book of the last decade and the formation of a brilliant dream-like creative team, this has been a surprising, emotional and inspiring journey — and we can’t wait for what will come next”.
As we reported last week, Yes is also underway on the third season of hit drama Shtisel, which has been picked up by Netflix. The broadcaster’s local hits also include Your Honor, Charlie Golf One and On The Spectrum which have been adapted into U.S. series by Showtime, Paramount and Amazon, respectively.
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