Channel 4 & Balmain: Unlikely partners make a cinematic drama series

Luxury Parisian fashion house, Balmain, has teamed up with edgy broadcaster, Channel 4, to create a short-form drama series, Fracture. It’s novel in a number of ways and it’s branded content in a very grown-up form. It is Channel 4’s first-ever branded entertainment drama series and the first time a fashion house has partnered with a broadcaster in this way. The five 8-minute episodes will feature Balmain’s Autumn 2021 collection and will launch on September 2, coinciding with London Fashion Week.

Balmain’s Olivier Rousteing was the series’ creative director. It was created by Michail Papadogkonas and Catherine Hope, written by Glenn Waldron, directed by Bradley & Pablo, and produced by Prettybird with executive producers, Alya Nazaraly and Txampi Diz. Fracture was overseen by former Channel 4 Drama commissioning editor, Lee Mason, who was behind recent Channel 4 smash hits, It’s A Sin and End of the F***ing World, and Channel 4 digital commissioning executive, Thomas Pullen working with 4Studio’s specialist commercial team.

It stars singer-songwriter, Jesse Jo Stark, Riverdale’s Charles Melton, Tommy Dorfman from 13 Reasons Why and Skate Kitchen’s Ajani Russell.

Channel 4’s synopsis of the series goes like this: Fracture is set in the desolate Le Rêve Motel on the outskirts of L.A., a shabby but charming landing spot for an array of colourful characters. We meet the mysterious Mya (Jesse Jo Stark), a struggling singer-songwriter who has fled her privileged life in New York for a solitary existence at the equally furtive Le Rêve.

Hers is a story of disaffection, of not being understood, and of not knowing where the hell you’re going with your life. Music is her passion, but why is she unable to write a note and why is she so unnerved when her sibling, Ari, (Tommy Dorfman) uncovers her whereabouts?

Against a brooding and melodic soundtrack, Mya finds a friend in fellow outsider Edie (Ajani Russell) who attempts to pull Mya out of her darkness and chaos. But it’s a chance meeting with the disarmingly handsome drifter and poet, Noa (Charles Melton), that really sets in motion a series of events that could propel Mya out of her solitude and completely change her life.

Fracture will be available via Channel 4’s YouTube channel and as a box set on All 4 and will be hosted on a co-branded website created for the series.

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