Home TV News Paramount+ Orders ‘Ray Donovan’ Spin-Off ‘The Donovans’ From Guy Richie & Ronan Bennett

Paramount+ Orders ‘Ray Donovan’ Spin-Off ‘The Donovans’ From Guy Richie & Ronan Bennett

Guy Ritchie Returns to His Gangster Roots as Director and Executive Producer

by Dave Elliott

Paramount+, Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios & 101 Studios have announced that Guy Ritchie will direct and executive produce The Donovans, a new series loosely based on the hugely popular ‘Ray Donovan’. Irish award-winning screenwriter, producer, novelist, and creator of ‘Top Boy’, Ronan Bennett, will pen all ten episodes.

With the most powerful clients in Europe, The Donovans will see family fortunes and reputations at risk, odd alliances unfold, and betrayal around every corner. While the family might be London’s most elite fixers today, the nature of their business means there is no guarantee what’s in store tomorrow.   

“Guy Richie and Ronan Bennett are the ideal dream-team to create a new global hit franchise with The Donovans,” said Chris McCarthy, President of Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios. “Guy’s riveting and stylish directorial approach combined with Ronan’s captivating and brutally authentic writing will transfix audiences into a wild and twisted world full of new adventures.”

This is something of a return to his roots for Richie, who began with the breakthrough movie Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. He then went on to direct the Sherlock Holmes franchise starring Robert Downey Jr., and Disney’s Aladdin which both grossed over $1B worldwide. More recently, he wrote and directed the instant cult classic, The Gentlemen, starring Matthew McConaughey, Colin Farrell, and The Covenant starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Dar Salim.

“We’re elated to partner with Showtime/MTV Entertainment Studios to reimagine the Ray Donovan legacy together.  Having Guy and Ronan sign on to join us on this incredible journey has been a true blessing,” adds David C. Glasser, CEO of 101 Studios.  “ We could not be more thrilled to take this huge hit and create a new and exciting show for audiences all over the world.”

Ronan Bennett is an award-winning screenwriter, producer, journalist and novelist, whose early life run-ins with the law underpin his gripping, authentic portrayal of crime and justice. At just 19 years old, Bennett was wrongfully convicted of murder and serving life in a maximum-security prison, until 18 months later when his conviction was overturned, following legal appeals.

Bennett’s harrowing experience influenced his first major work, The Catastrophist, which was shortlisted for the prestigious Whitbread Award for best novel. His distinct point of view on the criminal underworld caught the eye of Michael Mann, who commissioned Bennett to write the screenplay for Public Enemies starring Johnny Depp and Christian Bale, which became a box office success. In 2011, Bennett created, produced and wrote all episodes of Top Boy, a crime-fueled drama series chronicling drug dealing and gang violence in London – often compared to HBO’s The Wire. The show went on to win multiple awards and ran for 5 seasons. Bennett is also the creator and showrunner of the highly anticipated TV adaptation of The Day of The Jackal, which stars Oscar Winner Eddie Redmayne and has been written by Bennett.

“I’m thrilled to be working with Showtime, Paramount+ and 101 Studios. We’re going to deliver a show which provides massive thrills, entertainment and a huge rush of adrenaline for audiences around the world,” said Bennett. “At the same time, I’m totally focused on exploring real characters, in body and in soul, and I’m committed to writing stories with deep dramatic impact. We’re going to get under the skin of the criminal underworld, in a way which will show you the bone-deep truths of how they live and how it sometimes will – inevitably – impact on our own lives.”

The series is executive produced by Guy Richie, Ronan Bennett, David C. Glasser, Ron Burkle, Bob Yari, David Hutkin and Ivan Atkinson. 

The Donovans‘ does not yet have a premiere date but will air later this year on Paramount+ UK, and on Paramount+ with SHOWTIME Plan in the USA. If you want to keep track of this or any other show, you can add them via our Never Miss system, and you’ll be notified when it gets a UK premiere date.

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