American networks ABC and NBC recently gave the green light to two television series created by Keshet, “Beauty and the Baker” and “Lincoln,” establishing the Israeli broadcasting company as a content producer.
ABC is picking up the romantic comedy series “Beauty and the Baker,” which originated on Israel’s Channel 2 in 2017, and later became available on Netflix Israel and Amazon Prime Video.
The hour-long romantic comedy follows the love story of privileged Ashkenazi international supermodel and her Yemenite baker boyfriend, using it to explore ethnic divisions in Israel.
The show was created by Assi Azar, who had model Bar Refaeli in mind for the lead role. He replaced her with Rotem Sela when the real-life supermodel pulled out.
“I did not dream in my wildest dreams that this series I wrote in the room in my home in Tel Aviv would reach America’s ABC, and here it happened,” said Azar, who hosted the reality show “Big Brother” and will be co-hosting this week’s Eurovision Song Contest. “Thank God and thank Keshet International.”
In the ABC version, written by Dean Georgaris and directed by David Frankel, “The Baker and the Beauty” will be set in Miami and centers on the unlikely combination of a Cuban baker and the international supermodel he meets during one wild night on the town.
Another Keshet-produced pilot is “Lincoln,” based on the book series “The Bone Collector,” and co-executive produced by Sony Pictures Television, Universal Television, and Keshet Studios for NBC.
“Lincoln” follows former NYPD detective and forensic genius Lincoln Rhyme, who is forced out of his line of work after being seriously injured by a notorious serial killer.
The drama is based on the bestselling book series by Jeffrey Deaver, which had been adapted into a 1999 movie starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie.
“This is an important milestone for Keshet, which decided a few years ago that it is not only a broadcasting company, but an Israeli and international content company,” said Keshet CEO Avi Nir. “This is an important day for Israeli drama and the talents that are here.”