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BBC acquires The Slap from DCD Rights

BBC4 has acquired rights for Australian 8-part drama The Slap, which DCD Rights is to launch at MIPCOM 2011.

Produced by Matchbox Pictures for ABC Australia, the series boasts a stellar cast including Golden Globe Award nominee Melissa George, Academy Award Nominee Sophie Okonedo, Tony Award nominee Essie Davis, Jonathan LaPaglia, AFI Nominees Alex Dimitriades, Sophie Lowe, and two-time AFI Award-winning actor Anthony Hayes.

The BBC4 controller, Richard Klein, said: "The book was a runaway success and I'm pleased to bring this very well-made tale of our times to the channel. It reflects BBC4's desire to bring viewers the best programming from around the world and its focus on social contemporary issues will bring a different tone to the channel."

Nicky Davies Williams, CEO DCD Rights, says: "The Slap is a unique drama that never fails to provoke a discussion and questioning of values. We are delighted that BBC Four have acquired this to sit amongst a tradition of groundbreaking international drama acquisitions."

The BBC head of programme acquisition, Sue Deeks, added: "This fine Australian adaptation brings the novel's keen-eyed dissection of suburban living to the screen with tremendous performances – it is a truly powerful, compelling and thought-provoking watch."

The Slap is based on the award winning novel by Christos Tsiolkas and traces the shattering repercussions of a single event on a group of family and friends as a man slaps a child who is not his son at an Australian backyard barbeque.

It is due to premiere on ABC Australia this autumn and will also air on BBC4 later this year.