Paramount Global Channel 5 is well known for its love of luxury cruise liners and its upcoming drama series will be set aboard a ship sailing the Mediterranean Sea.
The UK Network has ordered HMS Murder (working title), an eight-part murder mystery series from British indie Clapperboard, in association with Endeavor Content, which was billed as “The Murder She Wrote meets Under the bridge.”
Set aboard a luxury cruise liner traveling through Mediterranean vacation hotspots, it follows the ship’s new cabaret singer, Jack Grayling, who discovers there are sinister elements beneath the surface. After a passenger is found murdered in the first port of call, First Officer Kate Woods’ lofty dream of her own command is in jeopardy and Jack finds himself thrust back into his old life as a detective. A flurry of murder mysteries ensues – each set against the backdrop of a different stunning coastal destination.
The series was commissioned by Paul Testar, Head of Commissioning, Drama for Channel 5 and Paramount+. Clapperboard’s executive producers are Mike Benson and lead writer Paul Matthew Thompson, with Sandra MacIver producing and Gordon Anderson directing. Endeavor Content, owned by CJ ENM, is distributed worldwide.
Producer Clapperboard has previously made several dramas for Channel 5, including Intruder and Maxine. Channel 5, meanwhile, has long been associated with popular factual shows set on cruise liners, including Cruise with Jane McDonald.
Testar said, “I am truly excited to once again be working with the talented team at Clapperboard Studios to bring HMS Murder to screens. With a variety of gloriously sunny locations added to the classic murder mystery genre, and with an added twist of music, Channel 5 viewers are in for a treat.
Clapperboard managing director Benson added: ‘We’ve seen a lot of murder cop shows in recent years – but not many featuring murders, mysteries and a cruise ship cabaret singer solving crimes. . HMS Murder is probably our most ambitious series to date, filmed in 8 different countries as well as a 6000 cabin luxury cruise liner sailing the Mediterranean.
Prentis Fraser, Executive Vice President of Television Distribution at Endeavor Content, said: “As soon as we heard that pitch, we were completely on board – this series is a brilliant combination of elements, a The Murder She Wrote meets Under the bridge with the perfect mix of glamour, charm and intrigue taking place in an abundance of beautiful and glitzy locations. With the accessibility of a procedural and a playlist of iconic titles, HMS Murder is ideally set to be a fan-favorite consigned series.
Filming is expected to begin later this year with casting details to follow in the coming months.