Red Arrow Studios International has partnered with UK production company 87 Films and Israel’s TTV Productions to develop Protection, an original, eight-part crime drama set in Israel, the UK and USA.
Conceived as a returning series, the drama centres on a psychologist who has been appointed to run the Israel Witness Protection Authority.
Protection is created by Alan Whiting (‘The Trials of Jimmy Rose’) and TTV Productions founder Zafrir Kochanovsky (‘Where Do You Live?’, ‘The Angel’), alongside Israeli writer Izhar Harlev. Whiting also serves as lead writer, while 87 Films’ Patrick Irwin (‘The Fall’, ‘Miss Scarlet and the Duke’) is on board to produce.
The series will be executive produced by Patrick Irwin, Zafrir Kochanovsky and Alan Whiting (pictured), alongside Carlo Dusi and Bo Stehmeier for Red Arrow Studios International.
Carlo Dusi, EVP Commercial Strategy, Scripted, at Red Arrow Studios International, said: “It is very rare to come across a project that is as international as Protection, and as compelling. Backed by extensive research, the series portrays life within the witness protection system from the inside out and in an unprecedented way. Zafrir’s original concept for the show felt fresh and compelling from the outset, and it’s a pleasure to be working with talent of Alan and Patrick’s calibre as we take out this exciting and topical drama series.”
Alan Whiting says: “It’s been a real delight working with the team on Protection, as well as spending time in Israel researching the set-up of their witness protection system and the co-operation that exists on a global scale.”
Patrick Irwin says: “It’s always great to find a project that is so obviously an organic co-production – and the opportunity to work with such experienced talent as Alan and Zafrir was a no-brainer. Red Arrow coming on board with their wealth of international experience will help us move the project to the next level and they have already been hugely helpful. We look forward to collaborating with them as it moves forward.”
Zafrir Zochanovsky says: “Witness Protection is a global phenomenon, with the UN Office on Drugs and Crime at the forefront. It’s an intriguing and very real world and though our story is set in the UK, the US and Israel, it will appeal to global audiences.”
In Protection, psychologist Dr Amalia Cohen-Aharonov has been newly appointed to head up the Israel Witness Protection Authority – a role previously only inhabited by men. Amalia is keen to correct her predecessor’s mistakes and impress the man who recruited her – the Minister of Public Security, Moshe Kolikov. At the same time as suspecting her husband of having an affair, Amalia is presented with an opportunity to bring down a major organised crime gang (the Segal Family), when senior gang member Moti Bar Mocha turns informer, requiring his family to be uprooted and put into protective custody. Amalia discovers that the tendrils of the gang weave their way across international borders and through every layer of society.
In the UK, Labour MP Helen Ronson finds herself the target of anti-Semitic abuse and the surprisingly persistent attentions of Moshe Kolikov. Her assistant Michael Shuster begins an investigation that leads to surprising conclusionsAnd in the US, Ovadia Hamami, an Israeli informer now living overseas in protection under the new identity of David Levi, comes back into Amalia’s life in violent circumstances.