The Australian production company Working Dog has sold its critically acclaimed comedy series Utopia to the US streaming service Netflix. The deal effectively exposes the series to an audience of more 45 million viewers.
The series, created by Rob Sitch, Santo Cilauro and Tom Gleisner, is a comedy series set within the Nation Building Authority, a fictitious government organisation responsible for overseeing major infrastructure projects.
It stars Sitch, Celia Pacquola, Dave Lawson, Luke McGregor, Kitty Flanagan and Toby Truslove. The first series of Utopia was aired on ABC1 in 2014 and won the TV Week Logie Award for most outstanding comedy series.The second series launches on the ABC in August.
To avoid confusion with the British thriller Utopia and the US reality series Utopia, the series will be re-titled Dreamland in both markets.
The deal was hammered out between the UK-based DCD Rights, which manages Working Dog's catalogue internationally, and Netflix's US head office in California's Silicon Valley.
Under the terms of the deal, the US and UK-based streaming services operated by Netflix will play the first two seasons of the series.
The first series will launch on Netflix in the US and UK later this year; the second season will be made available to Netflix subscribers in those markets after it airs on the ABC.
Netflix reports a 65.5 million global subscriber base, of which 42.3 million are in the US market. According to reports Netflix's UK subscriber base is estimated at around 4.5 million.
"We are incredibly excited to be part of the Netflix phenomenon," Working Dog principal Michael Hirsh said.
"And we are extremely flattered that they are running the original version, the Australian version," he said.
In a separate deal with Netflix, Working Dog has also sold the series to the Australia and New Zealand-based Netflix platforms.
It is expected to be available on the Netflix streaming platform in those markets later this year.
The first series of Utopia was aired on ABC1 in 2014 and won the TV Week Logie Award for most outstanding comedy series.
The second series launches on the ABC in August.