Scripted producer RubyRock Pictures, helmed by Zoë Rocha, has partnered with Andrea & Mitch Gabourie from Emmy Award-winning Forté Entertainment, and attached Declan O’Dwyer (“Miss Scarlett and the Duke”, “Flowers in the Attic: The Origin”) to write and direct television drama “Accidental Gangsters”, based on David Keogh’s non-fiction book series The Accidental Gangster, optioned by Forté Entertainment.
“Accidental Gangsters” is a crime drama inspired by true events. Set in 1960s’ Birmingham, it charts the ascension of the notorious Fewtrell family and its rise to power in the swinging clublands of England’s Second City.
Eddie Fewtrell, the eldest of eight vicious, but incredibly loyal brothers, and his wife Hazel, a matriarchal iron fist in a velvet glove who will stop at nothing to protect her family, are on the cusp of opening their second nightclub to fulfil their aim of building a ‘legitimate’ burgeoning empire. Well, as legitimate as they can be in a city overrun by rival gangs and with the police constantly breathing down their necks. When Philadelphia crime boss Little Nicky Scarfo decides to flood the UK with heroin with the help of the Kray twins, the celebrity London gangsters turn to Eddie…and the Krays are not men you say no to. Suddenly, the Fewtrells find themselves catapulted into a terrifying world of organised crime and the battle for dominance in Birmingham.
Forté’s Andrea Garbourie and Mitch Garbourie are set to executive produce the project alongside RubyRock’s ZoëRocha and Robbie von Werz. Mitch Powell of Second City Productions and Catherine Freeman of RubyRock Pictures will also produce.
RubyRock Pictures’ Zoë Rocha said: “This story has everything – family, nostalgia, crime and an iconic matriarch in Hazel Fewtrell, all weaved into an electrifying emotional rollercoaster. With David’s books as our unique window into one of the foremost crime family of 1960s’ Birmingham, and the support of the real-life Fewtrells, we are looking forward to working with Declan to bring this gritty and unruly tale to life.”
Writer/Director Declan O’Dwyer added: “The legacy of Eddie and Hazel Fewtrell has become part of gangland folklore, and I’m incredibly excited to bring the visceral, explosive and uncompromising story of the Fewtrell dynasty back to life.”
Forté’s executives, Andrea & Mitch Gabourie, said: “This is an incredible female led saga, which tells the untold story behind the legend of this infamous family. Contrasting the glamour of the nightclub world with the gritty, coldblooded realities of what went on behind the velvet curtain, “Accidental Gangsters” is primed to be the next premium drama hit that global audiences will devour.”
David J. Keogh, Author of The Accidental Gangster books, and husband to Hazel’s and Eddie’s daughter Abigail Fewtrell, commented: “I am delighted that this fascinating story will finally be seen on screen. It will shine a spotlight on the birth of Birmingham’s nightlife and the infamous characters and events behind this little known but true story.”
Abi Fewtrell, Eddie and Hazel Fewtrell’s daughter, said: “My father, Eddie Fewtrell, famously ran Birmingham with an iron fist. However, few people know that my mother played a vital role in the success of his empire. If my dad was the muscle, my mom was the brains. After the sad passing of my father earlier this year, I can think of no better tribute than their true story finally being told.”
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