CBS picks up drama ‘Ransom’ straight to series

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CBS has given a straight-to-series order to “Ransom,” from “The Man in the High Castle” producer Frank Spotnitz.

CBS is partnering with France’s TF1 and Canada’s Global for the 13-episode show, which hails from global studioEntertainment One (eOne), Big Light Productions and producers Sienna Films and Wildcats Productions. The show will star “Black Sails” actor Luke Roberts. eOne controls worldwide rights to the series, excluding French-speaking territories.

Spotnitz will serve as an executive producer on the series, which he created with David Vainola. “Ransom” is inspired by the professional experiences of crisis negotiator Laurent Combalbert, who, along with his partner, Marwan Mery, is considered to be among the top negotiators in the world. They travel around the globe to help multinational corporations and governmental agencies with complex negotiations and conflict resolution.

“Ransom” follows crisis and hostage negotiator Eric Beaumont (Roberts), whose team is brought in to save lives when no one else can. Eric understands criminals better than they do, and uses his insight into human behavior to resolve the most difficult kidnap and ransom cases. Despite the stakes, Eric refuses to resort to violence. While Eric’s considerable powers of manipulation make him the best at what he does professionally, they often complicate his relationships with family, friends and colleagues.

“The world of crisis negotiation is incredibly compelling, as demonstrated by the fascinating real-life cases Laurent Combalbert has negotiated,” Spotnitz says. “Laurent has inspired a brilliant and complex character, and you can’t help but be moved seeing all the lives he’s saved around the world.”

“As CBS continues to program year round, we are always looking for series that can fit seamlessly within our schedule and connect with our viewers,” CBS Entertainment president Glenn Geller says. “‘Ransom’ brings a compelling new approach to a character-driven crime drama with a sense of urgency and closure in each episode.”

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