Hit Israeli Series "Queens" Comes to America for U.S. Adaptation from Trio of Endemol Shine North America, Endemol Shine Israel and Gal Gadot & Jaron Varsano's Pilot Wave
December 3, 2019 — Endemol Shine North America and Endemol Shine Israel are teaming with Gal Gadot and Jaron Varsano’s Pilot Wave to develop a U.S. version of hit Israeli series “Queens,” it was announced today by Sharon Levy, President, Unscripted & Scripted Television, Endemol Shine North America.
“Queens” was Israeli Network HOT’s most-watched series in 2018 and is set to return for its second season in 2020. “Queens” is based on Endemol Shine Israel’s critically acclaimed original series created by Gal Zaid, Dani Rosenberg, Ruth Zaid and Dror Nobelman and based on an idea by Limor Nahmias.
Gadot and Varsano will serve as executive producers on the U.S. version, together with HOT's Nadav Hanin, Mirit Toovi and Guy Levy, Endemol Shine Israel's Amir Ganor, Gal Zaid, Ruth Zaid, as well as Endemol Shine North America’s Sharon Levy and Lisa Fahrenholt. The teams are currently packaging up the project and plan to take it to the marketplace at the top of the new year.
The Israeli version of “Queens” follows the women of the Malka family who must band together after all the Malka men are murdered by a rival crime syndicate. Thrust into a life that they did not choose or necessarily want, the women realize they can finally control their own destinies and respond to each other and the world around them as complete individuals, all while trying to stay alive.
“‘Queens’ is a complex piece about being female in our day in age, and all that goes with that from a family, career and relationship perspective,” says Endemol Shine North America’s Levy. “Watching these women make bold decisions, hilarious mistakes and learn to lean on one another set against a thriller backdrop, gives this show such a unique spirit that we all fell in love with it immediately. It’s gratifying to see a series that treats women with a deft complexity, showcasing that our differences are the strengths that unite us.”
“Queens is a brilliant story of female empowerment, with comic undertones and larger-than-life, eccentric women at its heart,” says Endemol Shine Israel’s Gail Zaid. “HOT nurtured this show and laid excellent groundwork to ensure its success and I’m absolutely thrilled to evolve the dramatic characters for the U.S. version with Gal, Jaron and the talented team at Endemol Shine North America.”
"We are so excited to celebrate these women through the ‘Queens’ story. These complex characters are captivating, delightfully funny and emotional. It is rare to find content that conveys characters in such a truthful way, while mirroring society. We are looking forward to bringing their story to the world and working with the Endemol Shine team on this project," says Gadot and Varsano.
Endemol Shine Israel is currently producing the second season of “Queens,” which will make its debut on HOT in Israel in 2020. The first season, which launched in October 2018, was HOT’s most watched series of the year.
Gal Gadot has teamed with producing partner and husband Jaron Varsano to form Pilot Wave, a production company that was launched in 2019. Pilot Wave has several previously announced film projects which include "My Dearest Fidel," with Chris Brancato penning the script and Sue Kroll producing, "Hedy Lamarr," a Showtime limited series which Gadot will star and executive produce from Warren Littlefield and Endeavor Content, with Sarah Treem (The Affair) writing the series, the fact-based historical thriller, "Irena Sendler," which tells the story about the heroic rescue of thousands of Polish children during WWII, that Gadot will star as the title character for Warner Brothers, which they will produce with Marc Platt.
Gadot will next be seen reprising her role as Wonder Woman in the Warner Brothers film, "Wonder Woman 1984," where she is also a producer on the film, which will be in theaters on June 5th, 2020. She just finished shooting the Kenneth Branagh film, "Death on the Nile" from 20th Century Fox and will begin production on the Netflix film "Red Notice" with Dwayne Johnson and Ryan Reynolds.
Endemol Shine North America is behind a number of high-profile upcoming dramas, including “Utopia” at Amazon Prime, which is being written and produced by Gillian Flynn (“Gone Girl”) and “Ripley” at Showtime, which is being written and directed by Steve Zaillian (“The Irishman,” “Schindler’s List”) and stars Andrew Scott (“Fleabag”).
Endemol Shine North America is also producing current FOX drama “Almost Family” with Universal Television. Endemol Shine Group is behind some of the most popular dramas in the world, including “Black Mirror,” “Peaky Blinders” and a diverse range of non-English language hits such as “Dark” and “Beforeigners.” Endemol Shine is one of the fastest-growing distributors of scripted formats over the last decade, with recent crime hits such as “Bron,” “Penoza” and “Broadchurch.”
About Endemol Shine North America
Endemol Shine North America delivers world-class content and compelling storytelling to multiple platforms in the U.S. and across the globe. Endemol Shine North America is part of Endemol Shine Group, the global content creator, producer and distributor with a diverse portfolio of companies that are behind some of the most prominent hit television formats and series in the world.
Its Endemol Shine Latino division oversees all Spanish and Portuguese-language operations across Latin America, including newly launched studio Endemol Shine Boomdog, which produces original content for both the U.S. Hispanic and Mexican markets. Subsidiary production companies include Authentic Entertainment, Truly Original, and 51 Minds Entertainment.
About Endemol Shine Israel
Endemol Shine Israel creates and produces both original content and localized international formats. Their multi-genre formats have won great success both in domestic and the international markets. Among the company's international successes are two international Emmy Awards for “Nevsu” (2018) and “Traffic Light” (2010) which both we honored for Best Comedy.
The company's projects have traveled worldwide. “The Orpheus Project” has been sold to Holland as an adaptation and as finished tapes to 'Dust' in the US, “Harem” was commissioned as finished tape to SBS Australia, “Beauty and the Baker” was sold as a finished tape to Amazon and as a remake in the US and additional worldwide territories. Other notable shows include “Just for Today,” “Fifty” and many more.
About Pilot Wave
Pilot Wave Motion Pictures, founded by Gal Gadot and Jaron Varsano, produces powerful storytelling that creates momentum in TV and film. The company brings the perspectives and experiences of unique people, to guide new themes in society with stories that ignite the imagination.