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AMC Signs Studio Deal With E1 Entertainment to Produce Network’s Next Pilot Hell on Wheels

Furthering its commitment to deliver premium television on basic cable, AMC announced a deal today with E1 Entertainment (E1) to produce and Endemol USA to executive produce its next pilot, Hell on Wheels. A contemporary western that centers on the building of the Transcontinental Railroad, Hell on Wheels was created and written by Joe and Tony Gayton (Faster/Uncommon Valor/Salton Sea /Bulletproof) who will also executive produce. The project was developed by Endemol USA. Jeremy Gold, Endemol’s SVP of Scripted Programming, will executive produce. David Goldberg is Chairman of Endemol North America. E1 Television CEO John Morayniss and SVP creative affairs Michael Rosenberg will oversee production. David Von Ancken (Seraphim Falls/Californication) has signed on to direct the pilot and production is scheduled to begin in Alberta, Canada this August.

Hell on Wheels brilliantly captures the world surrounding the construction of the first Transcontinental Railroad in post civil war America. The epic setting provides the perfect backdrop for the early industrialism and corruption surrounding the project; the incredible immigrant experience; and the good, the bad, and the ugly of what it took to get this railroad built,” said Joel Stillerman, AMC’s SVP of original programming, production and digital content. “The Gaytons have created a high octane world that pays homage to the script’s namesake, and this show fits perfectly with our goal of creating premium television on basic cable.”

In addition to the AMC deal, E1 and Endemol USA have entered into their first international distribution partnership. Under the terms of this agreement, Endemol will hold all television distribution rights across Europe with E1 selling Hell on Wheels in all remaining territories. E1 also holds worldwide rights for DVD/Blu-ray, VOD and Digital distribution.

“AMC has an excellent reputation for delivering premium programming and E1 is thrilled to be partnering with them to produce this exceptional pilot,” said John Morayniss. “As one of the largest independent television production companies in North America, this deal further illustrates how E1 has become the go-to studio for U.S. and international broadcasters seeking an independent production partner. And not just for production. Our distribution agreement with Endemol USA marks the start of a beautiful relationship and ensures powerful and effective international reach for Hell on Wheels.

“This has been a passion project for us at Endemol USA for over 2 years, and I am thrilled to see it finally take flight,” said David Goldberg, Chairman of Endemol North American. “The Gaytons delivered a truly remarkable script and AMC is the perfect home for this show. And by partnering with E1 for distribution, we will undoubtedly maximize the global success of Hell on Wheels.”

Hell on Wheels centers on former confederate soldier Cullen Bohannan, whose quest for vengeance has led him to the Union Pacific Railroad’s westward construction of the first Transcontinental Railroad.

AMC’s Susie Fitzgerald, SVP of original programming, Jeremy Elice, VP of original programming and Susan Goldberg, director of production oversee development and production for Hell on Wheels. AMC’s Marci Wiseman, SVP of business affairs negotiated the deal with E1 and Endemol and will oversee business affairs on the project.

Joe and Tony Gayton are repped by UTA.

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