James Murdoch met with Italy’s prime minister, Matteo Renzi, on June 23rd and promised that Sky Italia would be making a €40 million investment in two long-form drama series, ‘Diabolik’ and ‘The Young Pope’.
‘Diabolik’ is being co-funded by Sky Italia, Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia. A 10-episode drama, and based on a popular Italian comic book, the story tells of a master thief who takes on different identities in order to steal from other wrong-doers. The series is being produced by the same production company behind ‘Gomorra’, the ultra-gritty series about the Neapolitan mafia, which has been sold to 62 countries and re-commissioned for a second series.
Murdoch was accompanied by the head of Sky Italia, Andrea Zappia. Murdoch, in s statement said, the Italian TV industry still has “huge unexpressed potential” and spoke enthusiastically about a recent parliamentary bill that would extend Italy’s tax credit scheme from films to also include TV production could breathe new life into the country’s struggling scripted TV sector.
The tax incentives allow local producers a 20 per cent tax break, and outside investors a 40 per cent allowance.