A&E Network Developing New Scripted Drama Series 'The Returned'

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

Written By

September 27th, 2013

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via press release:


New York, NY—September 27, 2013—A&E Network is in development on the new original scripted drama series “The Returned,” a co-production of A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America. The announcement was made today by David McKillop, General Manager and Executive Vice President of A&E Network.

“The Returned” is based on the popular French suspense series adapted by Fabrice Gobert and inspired by the feature film, Les Revenants, directed by Robin Campillo.  “The Returned” focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people, who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. As they attempt to resume their lives, strange phenomena and gruesome murders begin to occur.

“’The Returned’ takes an incredibly unique approach, filled with suspense and twists and turns, to the subject of the living dead,” said McKillop.  “Part mystery, part thriller; ‘The Returned’ is a perfect complement to A&E’s unique brand of scripted storytelling.”

Commented Thom Beers, CEO of FremantleMedia North America, “’The Returned’ is a fascinating series with a truly unique premise. Having seen Fabrice Gobert’s original version and the success the series has had in France, we’re thrilled to be partnering with the team at A+E to bring this enigmatic thriller to U.S. audiences.”

“The Returned” is co-produced by A+E Studios (“Houdini”) and FremantleMedia North America (“American Idol,” “The X Factor”) in association with Haut et Court TV SAS, the producer of the French series, for A&E Network.  FremantleMedia will distribute the series internationally, excluding the U.S. and Canada, which will be distributed by A+E Studios. The executives overseeing the project for FremantleMedia North America are Thom Beers and Craig Cegielski and Bob DeBitetto for A+E Studios.

  • K

    Doesn’t ABC have a very similar series premiering in midseason with the same exact name????

  • AniMatsuri

    Wasn’t there a series on USA awhile back called 4200 that was similar in plot to this?

  • Ray

    @K ABC has a series called “Resurrection” airing midseason with a very similar premise.

  • John A

    Cool i really liked the french version.

  • Wright

    Sounds promising…I’ll check it out.

  • Tony JJ

    @K and @Ray

    ABC has a mid season drama called “Ressurection” which was titled “The Returned” during developed. And has the exact same premise. I mean is A&E serious?

  • Igwell

    Fantastic. I have no faith in ABC to do it properly.

  • Bill

    Who cares? A&E will cancel it after 2 seasons Ina cliffhanger anyway.

  • Bill

    Who cares A&E will cancel after 2 seasons on a cliff hanger anyway

  • johnhelvete

    4400 was a show about people who were presumed dead and return years later. If I recall, the people were abducted by aliens and some of the people who return have special powers.

    Resurrection is based on a book with a similar premise, but the French show is a horror story with a moody/creepy/dark tone. Resurrection, the ABC show seems to be going for a more family friendly network vibe, where it is some kind of global miracle that the dead have returned.

  • Eric_Philly

    To help (since I just started rewatching it 2 days ago):
    The 4400 was a USA series beginning in 2004 about 4400 people who’d been reported missing over the past 58 years suddenly reappearing in a ball of light. Nobody’s sure who/what took/returned them (although it’s revealed later on).

    All I have to say about this announcement is: For this they cancelled The Glades?

  • Shepherd

    I always felt that the 4400 got screwed by the writers strike. I’ll check this out.

  • cimmer

    I’ll be more interested in the A&E version than the ABC one. This premise sounds more suited to being done well on cable than broadcast.

  • arial

    As long as they don’t cancel Longmire to make room for it.

  • Chris_SAdvisor

    Roadside Picnic (1971), a Russian book by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky laid the foundation, with people suddenly returning from the grave not realizing they had been dead.

    Having read a few reviews of the original French film, it is good that they are basing this off the TV series instead, as the movie’s plot was full of problems. Though with Cuse being tapped for this, I can almost feel the dark force of Lindelof being pulled towards it. If they meet up again, it will just be another mystery box nightmare. After all, the French TV series is likened to Twin Peaks, which is probably why A&E is interested. Finding excellent writers will be key.

    While some may claim that the ‘previously deceased’ are zombies or living dead, they are not (in the French movie and series anyway). They do have a few strange quirks, but they are definitely alive. This is not A&E’s take on the Walking Dead, and there are no zombies unless they basically are just paying for the name, and pretending this has any relation to the original material.

  • johnhelvete

    What I really liked about Les Revenants was the feeling that the show was not about the “why” or the “how”, but the characters facing this unbelievable thing that has happened. I could watch the show for 5 seasons and if the show never answers the “why” or the “how”, that would be ok with me.

  • rob60990

    A&E really has become pathetic. First they keep hyping up a low rated loser in Bates Motel. Now they are copying a show from another network.

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