Emmy award-winning actress, Archie Panjabi, has teamed up with BBC Studios Kids & Family to develop the new comedic mystery series, Anisha Accidental Detective. 

Based on the book series of the same name, written by Serena Patel and illustrated by Emma McCann, the ten part live-action series follows strong-willed ten-year-old, Anisha Mistry, whose life is upended when her auntie’s fiancé disappears a few days before their big Bollywood-style wedding.

Anisha must use her super sleuthing skills to uncover what’s happened to her Uncle Tony and get him to the wedding on time. Using the framework of classic detective dramas, the show is a “bingeable whodunnit series for audiences aged 7+, bursting with intrigue, laughs, twists and turns. Anisha’s race for the truth is set against the backdrop of a lavish, glamourous Bollywood style wedding.”

Archie Panjabi, who was the first South Asian woman to win an Emmy award for acting and is best known for her work on The Good Wife, Blindspot, Bend It Like Beckham, and is currently starring in Under The Bridge,has come on board as Executive Producer of the series.

Archie said: “BBC Studios Kids & Family have pulled together an amazing team to bring these utterly delightful books to life. With a British Indian family at the heart, it’s a wonderful celebration of British Indian culture. Anisha was the character I yearned to see on screen when I was a ten-year-old. The series is a refreshing comedy mystery about friendship, family and growing up, packed with vibrant characters. It’s delightfully intriguing and will keep the whole family craving for more – just like Anisha’s granny’s parathas!”

Serena Patel, author of the Anisha Accidental Detective books, which are published by Usborne and have been a success across countries including the UK, Australia and India, said: “I was thrilled when I heard that Archie Panjabi was coming on board as Executive Producer for the series. I have huge admiration for her career as an actor and for her to be involved in bringing my books to the screen feels like a dream come true.”

The series is being developed by BBC Studios Kids & Family in a deal optioned by Emily Hayward-Whitlock at The Artist Partnership and Kate Shaw at The Shaw Agency, with up-and-coming screenwriter and children’s novelist Nikesh Shukla. Nikesh is the writer of the multi-award winning Two Dosas and the author of The Council of Good Friends and several YA novels. He is also co-founder of The Good Literary Agency, as well as working on a Spider-Man comic book miniseries for Marvel.

BBC Studios Kids & Family VP of Development, Edward Barnieh, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with industry leaders like Archie Panjabi, alongside exciting new talent like Serena and Nikesh, to bring Anisha Accidental Detective to a global audience. The series will feature fresh, diverse characters and will be bursting with clues, suspects and hilarious mishaps and, with a ticking clock counting down to a big family wedding, it’s sure to keep audiences on the edge of their seats.”

IMAGE CREDIT: Marine Smoyan

Jon Creamer

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