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Natalie Dormer to Star in South African Drama White Lies


Quizzical Pictures and Fremantle are co-producing the eight-part drama White Lies for M-Net in South Africa.

Natalie Dormer (Games of Thrones, The Hunger Games, Picnic at Hanging Rock) and Brendon Daniels (Four Corners, Skemerdans, Trackers) co-star in the crime thriller. Created by Sean Steinberg and written byDarrel Bristow-Bovey, White Lies is an exploration of race and privilege, inequality and identity, centering on a strong female protagonist and diverse characters entangled in a murder mystery.

Set in the wealthy neighborhood of Bishopscourt, Cape Town, investigative journalist Edie Hansen (Dormer) gets caught up in the ugly underbelly that lies beneath the picturesque beauty of the city, dragging her back to a turbulent past. She finds herself at loggerheads with veteran detective Forty Bell (Daniels), and grapples with the crumbling local police force, a corrupt political system and the secretive world of extreme Cape wealth.

Waldimar Pelser, director of premium channels at M-Net, said: “We are thrilled to announce this latest international co-production from the M-Net stable and proud to be building new global content partnerships.

White Lies brings together an exceptional creative team and stellar cast in a riveting story set in Cape Town, an iconic city with great natural beauty but also hidden undercurrents. We believe White Lies will resonate with series lovers locally and globally.  Partnerships such as this one with Quizzical Pictures and Fremantle give shows the best shot at reaching their full potential and cement M-Net’s reputation as the home of world-class entertainment.”

Nomsa Philiso, CEO of general entertainment at MultiChoice Group, added: “International co-productions are an exciting strategy that M-Net has employed in recent years, and we are pleased to continue exploring new, more global ways of telling our stories to a larger audience. This helps our content to not only travel further than before but also benefits the talent behind the scenes and in front of the camera when it comes to skills exchange and further opportunities for growth.”

Julie Hodge, VP for editorial, global drama, at Fremantle, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with Natalie again and announce this latest partnership with M-Net and Quizzical. White Lies is a multi-layered, psychological thriller which forces us to examine the darker side of wealth and affluence, and the complexity of family dynamics. I’ve no doubt that White Lies will build upon the standout success we have achieved with our first South African drama Reyka, and we look forward to partnering again with Quizzical and M-Net on this new journey.”

Harriet Gavshon, creative director at Quizzical Pictures and White Lies producer, said: “We are very happy to be working again with our partners at M-Net and Fremantle and especially delighted to have Natalie Dormer join our South African cast. Once again, we are happy to showcase the wealth of South African talent both behind and in front of the camera.”

About Kristin Brzoznowski

Kristin Brzoznowski is the executive editor of World Screen. She can be reached at


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