New TV3 crime drama ‘Darklands’ awarded €500,000 under funding scheme

RTÉ’s ‘Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope’ and ‘Striking Out’ also awarded production money by BAI

 ‘Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope’, starring Nika McGuigan (left) and Seána Kerslake, was awarded €250,000 by the BAI for its second series on RTÉ2.

‘Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope’, starring Nika McGuigan (left) and Seána Kerslake, was awarded €250,000 by the BAI for its second series on RTÉ2.


TV3’s next Irish-produced drama will be a six-part crime series called Darklands made for the channel by Parallel Films, according to the new list of Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) funding announcements.

The project, which is expected to air next spring and is written by Mark O’Connor and Adam Coates, was awarded €500,000 under the authority’s Sound and Vision scheme.

This was the joint highest award in the latest round of funding. Animators Treehouse Republic, the makers of bilingual RTÉjr cartoon Ballybraddan, was also granted €500,000 to go toward the cost of producing 20 new episodes.

Two RTÉ dramas, Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope for RTÉ2 and RTÉ One’s Striking Out , also received funding for their second series.

Deadpan Pictures was granted €250,000 for Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope, which is written by Stefanie Preissner, while €150,000 was awarded to Striking Out. After a four-episode run earlier this year, the Amy Huberman legal drama will be back with six episodes in its second series.

Brown Bag Films was granted €200,000 for one-off animation Angela’s Christmas, which will be broadcast on RTÉ One, while Igloo Productions received €240,000 for 26 episodes of Peak Zoo for RTÉjr.

Grand Pictures was awarded €250,000 to make Dark Lies the Island, a feature film that will be shown on RTÉ One and also has support from the Irish Film Board. The script is by Kevin Barry and the film is based on his collection of short stories of the same name.

One of the arts and culture projects given funding was Women of the Oireachtas, which will follow artist Noel Murphy as he embarks on a project to create a painting of all female members of the Oireachtas. The documentary, which was awarded €80,000, will be shown on Oireachtas TV.

A total of €5.5 million was allocated in this round of Sound and Vision, which is the main part of the Broadcast Fund that receives 7 per cent of the money collected through the licence fee each year.

“While there is a slight decrease in the number of applications in this round, once again the amount sought far exceeded the funding available,” said the authority’s chief executive Michael O’Keeffe.

“At a time when measures are under consideration to counter television licence evasion, it is worth bearing in mind that any increase in revenue will also lead to an increase in the amounts available to support more projects of the type we are announcing today.”