Former Darlow Smithson Productions MD Emily Dalton and writer-producer Tom Dalton are launching UK indie Factual Fiction with backing from financier Great Point Media.
The Yorkshire-based husband and wife duo will focus on drama, documentary and specialist factual after having previously collaborated on three Agatha Christie TV movies, including the upcoming Agatha And The Midnight Murders with Helen Baxendale (Friends).
Factual Fiction will include two sister labels: factual banner Good Story Rory and scripted banner Salted Bomb.
The Daltons’ Agatha Christie film The Curse Of Ishtar, starring Lyndsey Marshall and Jonah Hauer-King, screened before Christmas on Channel 5. The first film in the trilogy, Agatha And The Truth Of Murder, debuted in 2018.
Veteran producer Patrick Irwin (The Fall) has joined the company as a consultant while Chamoun Issa will serve as development executive.
At Endemol Shine indie DSP, Emily Dalton originated projects including The King In The Car Park, The Mill, 24Hrs In The Past and Made In Great Britain. She left the company earlier this year.
Great Point Ventures’ EIS investment in Factual Fiction is its second to be announced this year (after helping to launch Camden Productions) and eighth overall.
Great Point Media CEO Jim Reeve said: “Tom and Emily represent the depth of talent that can be found across the country and we look forward to helping Factual Fiction become an outstanding producer of quality content in the UK and beyond. In spite of the current difficulties faced by the production community, it’s essential investment of this type continues. We must ensure that the UK’s creative industries thrive in the post-coronavirus era.”
Emily Dalton added, “Ishtar and Midnight Murders were shot back-to-back in Malta and went from idea to finished films in ten months. As the industry consolidates post lockdown, we aim to bring the same relentless energy and focus to our upcoming projects. We love delivering programmes that viewers are excited by, and our ability to thrive under pressure will be more useful now than ever.”
Tom Dalton commented, “A few weeks ago, our eight-year-old daughter asked if we were key workers. No, I explained, without us the world keeps spinning. Her disappointment was obvious but short-lived: ‘I love television’. Factual Fiction won’t save the world but our ambition is clear: make great TV.”
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