Cowell company to produce 'Downton Abbey'-style TV show

Cowell company to produce 'Downton Abbey'-style TV show

Simon Cowell is planning a 'Downton Abbey'-style show about Broadmoor psychiatric hospital.

The 'X Factor' boss' Syco TV company will produce the series, which will be set in the high-security medical facility in the Victorian era, and plotlines will be based on real-life stories in Mark Stevens’ book 'Broadmoor Revealed: Victorian Crime And The Lunatic Asylum'.

Damien Timmer - joint managing director of Mammoth Screen, who will work with the music mogul's production company on the project - told the Daily Mirror newspaper: “The stories of the staff and inmates are engrossing and often deeply moving, and they are shot through with a very English eccentricity and dark sense of humour.”

Patients set to feature include murderer William Chester Minor - who became a major contributor to the Oxford English Dictionary during his time at the facility - and Christiana Edmunds, who was known as the Chocolate Cream Poisoner after killing at least one person by lacing sweet treats with poison.

The period drama has been earmarked for BBC One after Simon held secret talks with the channel's controller Danny Cohen, although neither the network nor Syco have confirmed such plans.

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