The Secrets She Keeps

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Laura Carmichael And Jessica De Gouw Lead 10’s New Psychological Thriller, The Secrets She Keeps.

Australia’s finest, and one very notable British import, have been assembled for 10’s six-part psychological thriller The Secrets She Keeps , which commences production tomorrow.

Set in Sydney and the Blue Mountains, the screen adaptation of Michael Robotham’s bestselling novel stars Laura Carmichael ( Downton Abbey, The Spanish Princess ) as Agatha and Jessica De Gouw ( Riot, Underground ) as Meghan - two women from vastly different backgrounds both with explosive secrets that could destroy everything they hold dear.

These leading ladies are in fine company with Michael Dorman ( Patriot, Wonderland ) starring as Meghan’s husband Jack, Ryan Corr ( Bloom, Holding The Man ) as Jack’s best friend Simon and Michael Sheasby ( The Nightingale, The Luminaries ) cast as Agatha’s partner Hayden.

Network 10 Head of Drama and Executive Production, Rick Maier, said: “You’d be hard pressed to find a more compelling contemporary novel. This is Michael Robotham at his brilliant best and an equally stunning adaptation from Sarah Walker and Jono Gavin.

“If you’ve read the book you’ll know why we’re all so excited at 10 to bring TSSK to the screen. And no wonder it has attracted such a sensational cast either. It should be a cracker.”

Lingo Pictures’ Producer, Helen Bowden, said: " The Secrets She Keeps is an utterly gripping domestic noir about motherhood and envy. But no matter how dark the story becomes, we always have enormous compassion for the two women at its centre.

“This is the dream team of writers, directors and cast to adapt this fantastic story. We can’t wait to get started.”

The Secrets She Keeps is a Lingo Pictures production for Network 10 with major production investment from Screen Australia in association with Network 10. Financed with support from Create NSW.

It is produced by Helen Bowden and Paul Watters and written by Sarah Walker and Jonathan Gavin. Directed by Catherine Millar and Jennifer Leacey, Lingo Pictures’ Jason Stephens and 10’s Rick Maier are executive producers. International sales are being handled by DCD Rights.

The Secrets She Keeps is coming soon to 10 and Win Network.

Yet another female skewing drama on commercial television in Australia. Can’t we do anything else these days, that appeals to a wider audience?

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This feels different though than the other female led dramas 10 have tried, have we seen a physiological thriller like this from one of the commercial networks recently? I can’t think of one.

Sneak peek during the 2020 upfronts this morning.

I wonder if 10 will be brave enough to air all these episode on 10play first.

That would kill the broadcast ratings.

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Does that matter when most of their dramas scrape 300k anyway?

It does if the ratings end up at half of that. How can they attract advertisers with those sorts of ratings and keep funding the network?

As recently mentioned by one of the network execs, they don’t make enough money from the small amount of advertising on their catch-up/streaming services to fund programming. It doesn’t pay the bills.

But they have ads on 10play. That is how they would attract advertisers right?

Yes, but those ads can be blocked and there aren’t enough ads to fund a program. It has been said that advertisers have been (so far) reluctant to advertise that way which is why you often see no ads in some breaks or the same ads throughout a single stream.

I still think it could survive on 10play and on free to air. I think the people watching the show online wouldn’t be the same people who watch something on TV. I just think it would give the show a larger audience because people prefer to watch drama differently. And if networks don’t start thinking of a different approach with drama then the genre could become redundant. The issue with networks and your worry about ‘ratings being affected’ is one of the many reasons FTA is dying.

But if they don’t generate income from advertising they will go broke. So unless they start charging for content on 10 play, they will be gone sooner rather than later.

I am sure there are ways they can make revenue from both. They will still get those that just like to watch FTA and hopefully can make the $$ online. Shows like Love Island claim to attract advertisers from the online figures.

10 Head of Programming Daniel Monaghan tells TV Tonight he expects the mini-series to debut in the second quarter of 2020.

I’ve only seen the first few episodes so far, but it is a great thriller. And evidenced that it is very good by selling very well around the world at the moment, which is really exciting. It’s something different for us to go into that thriller genre, but it’s very commercial in the way that the story is told.
To get Laura Carmichael from Downton Abbey was a real coup for us, and partly the reason why it is selling so well, particularly in the UK and the US.

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The mini-series has been acquired by the BBC and (according to C21) will air on BBC Four.

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