[05/25/06 - 12:00 AM]
Sci Fi Channel Conjures Up Drama with New Original Series 'The Dresden Files'

[via press release from Sci Fi]


Lionsgate Series to Star Paul Blackthorne

NEW YORK - May 23, 2006 � SCI FI Channel is adding 'The Dresden Files,' a detective/fantasy series starring Paul Blackthorne ('24,' 'Presidio Med'), to its lineup of original dramas with an 11-episode order beyond the two-hour movie pilot. Directed by David Carson ('Star Trek: Generations'), the pilot was filmed in Toronto last winter and will launch the series on SCI FI in January 2007. The announcement was made today by Mark Stern, Executive Vice President of Original Programming, SCI FI Channel.

The series will be produced by Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), the leading independent filmed entertainment studio, and executive produced by Nicolas Cage and Norm Golightly of Saturn Films ('The Life of David Gale,' 'Shadow of the Vampire'). Hans Beimler ('The District,' 'Profiler'), Robert Wolfe ('The 4400,' 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine') and Morgan Gendel ('Law & Order,' 'V.I.P.') are also executive producers.

Based on the best-selling series of novels by Jim Butcher, 'The Dresden Files,' written by Wolfe and Beimler, tells the story of Harry Dresden, a Chicago-based private detective with extraordinary abilities. Where others see typical crimes of assault, kidnapping and murder, Harry sees otherworldly forces at work. He's a wizard, the real thing, the only wizard listed in the Chicago yellow pages. Whether consulting for the police on inexplicable crimes or following his own cases, Dresden does battle with the forces of darkness, always maintaining a wry sense of humor and a unique perspective on our world.

"'The Dresden Files' turns the private eye and detective show formula on its ear with a new fantastical take on the genre set in our real world," said Stern. "We are very excited about this project and Paul brings Harry to life with just the right mix of believability, intensity and wry humor."

"We're delighted to be in business with SCI FI on 'The Dresden Files,'" said Kevin Beggs, President of Television Programming and Production, Lionsgate. "We've assembled an outstanding creative team to translate the tone and attitude of Butcher's beloved best-sellers to the small screen, and believe this series has the potential to attract a very large and loyal following."

Paul Blackthorne, best known for his acclaimed performance as the villainous Stephen Saunders on 24, also starred in Presidio Med and the feature film Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India. He has guest starred on Medium and ER, and has a recurring role on Deadwood.

Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF) is the leading independent filmed entertainment studio and is a premier producer and distributor of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment and video-on-demand content. Its prestigious and prolific library of more than 5,000 titles is a valuable source of stable, recurring revenue and is a foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate brand name is synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the globe.

SCI FI Channel is a television network where "what if" is what's on. SCI FI fuels the imagination of viewers with original series and events, blockbuster movies and classic science fiction and fantasy programming, as well as a dynamic Web site (www.scifi.com ) and magazine. Launched in 1992, and currently in 85 million homes, SCI FI Channel is a network of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies.

  [may 2006]  

· 24 (FOX)
· 4400, THE (USA)

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