‘Desperate Housewives’ to be Produced for Turkey by Walt Disney Company

The Walt Disney Company Turkey today announced plans for a local production of the iconic hit series “Desperate Housewives,” bringing a new take on the series’ darkly comedic view of suburbia to Turkish audiences. The series, to be known as “Umutsuz Ev Kadinlari,” will be co-produced by Medyapim and Disney, and is to air on free to air channel Kanal D later this year.

The original “Desperate Housewives” won both the 2005 and 2006 Golden Globe Awards for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy, and was created by Marc Cherry and produced by ABC Studios. The series is broadcast in more than 200 territories around the world, where it has been one of the most popular U.S. TV shows in recent history. The ABC Television Network recently announced that this upcoming season – its eighth – will be the final one for the original series.

Since 2006, four different versions have been produced for Latin American audiences. These are “Amas de Casa Desesperadas,” the Argentinean version (in Spanish, for broadcast in Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay); the Colombian/Ecuadorian version (in Spanish, broadcast in Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, Panama, and also sold to Japan); the U.S. Hispanic version (for broadcast in U.S., Mexico, Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic); and “Donas de Casa Desesperadas,” the Brazilian version (in Portuguese, for broadcast in Brazil).

Sinan Ceylan, Country Manager, The Walt Disney Company Turkey, Greece and Cyprus said: “We’re extremely excited to be co-producing a local version of the hit series ‘Desperate Housewives,’ as it offers us the opportunity to connect with Turkish audiences by telling a locally relevant and entertaining story with an all star Turkish cast, using the universal stories and characters created by ABC Studios. This announcement demonstrates our commitment to investing in the Turkish market and supporting the local entertainment industry.”

Fatih Aksoy, CEO, Medyapim, added: “I believe ‘Desperate Housewives’ has one of the best scripts ever written for television. When adapting to Turkish, we are ensuring that we keep up with the level of the original values of the script and will pursue as excellent a production as it has been in the U.S.”

The series’ well-known Turkish cast includes Songul Oden (“Gumus”) as Susan (to be called Suzan), Bennu Yildirimlar as Bree (called Berrin), Evrin Solmaz as Gabrielle (called Yildiz), and Ceyda Duvenci as Lynette (called Leyla). The series will be filmed on location in Istanbul, where a local “Wisteria Lane” has been found. Production will closely follow the format and storylines of the original US version, with a uniquely Turkish flavour.

The Walt Disney Company has leveraged other ABC Studios-produced scripted series for local production across the world; including versions of “Grey’s Anatomy,” “The Golden Girls,” “According to Jim” and “Hope & Faith” in Turkey, local versions of “The Golden Girls” in Russia, Greece, Israel and Spain, and “Brothers & Sisters” and “Grey’s Anatomy” in Colombia.

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