Derek and Julianne Hough Develop Ballroom Drama “Blackpool” for Starz

Apparently, there was another announcement for yesterday – don’t know what happened to that one, but Derek’s publicist made it clear that this is a different one. And pretty exciting as well. But I don’t have Starz. Yet. :-) From The Hollywood Reporter (click to read the whole thing):

Julianne and Derek Houghare delving into a world with which they’re familiar.

The brother-sister pair is developing a Starz scripted drama set in the world of competitive ballroom dancing, for which they will draw on years of first-hand experiences as competitors at the world championship level. TitledBlackpool, the drama effort will revolve around the prestigious annual ballroom competition in Blackpool, England, with a focus on the darker side of ballroom dancing.
“When you’re in the world, you’re so invested. It’s literally the be-all and end-all. But when you step back from it, you see that obsession with perfection and the fact that the lifestyle that you thought was so glamorous is actually a little shocking,” Julianne Hough says in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. The comment comes mere weeks after Hough revealed in a Cosmopolitan cover story that she was a victim of physical and emotional abuse as a young dancer living in England.

Her brother, who appears on Dancing With the Stars,one of the many TV series that have capitalized on the interest in the dancing genre in recent years, makes clear that the series will push into particularly bleak areas of the sport. “What makes it so interesting is seeing all of the politics and the scandal,” says Derek Hough. “It’s framed in the world of ballroom dancing, but the stories that are intertwined are of the partnerships and the sex and the love triangles.”

In addition to lending their own tales from the ultra-competitive world, the Houghs will serve as executive producers on the project as well as the head choreographers. At this time, they have no plans to appear on screen, though they do intend to be actively involved in the process of hiring and casting. Julianne, currently on an international press tour for her film Safe Haven, notes that she is currently meeting with potential writers in London.

The siblings acknowledge that this drama is something that they have toyed with bringing to the small screen for some time. They shopped it to a handful of networks but suggest that they were particularly struck by Starz CEO Chris Albrecht’s passion for it in the room. And while they have a deep well from which to draw from, they don’t intend to make this an autobiographical tale. “We definitely want it to be fictionalized,” says Julianne. “We’re going to start with our experiences in the world and stories that we’ve either seen or gone through, but it’ll be fun to be able to elaborate and fictionalize these characters.”