Greta Scacchi and Bryan Brown.

Bryan Brown and Greta Scacchi will lead the new mystery drama Darby and Joan, which CJZ is producing for Acorn TV.

The eight-part series stars Brown as a retired Australian policeman with a dog as his only company and Scacchi as a widowed English nurse. The pair meet each other and embark together on an epic odyssey in the outback of northern Australia.

Filming will begin in Queensland this month, with major production investment from Screen Australia in association with Screen Queensland.

Darby and Joan will be executive produced by Claire Tonkin, David Hannam, Matt Campbell, Bea Tammer and Catherine Mackin, with series producer Pino Amenta.

Created by Glenys Rowe and Phillip Gwynne, the series’ writers include Hannam, Beck Cole, Andrew Anastasios, Giula Sandler, Ainslie Clouston, Adam Zwar and Paul Bennett. The set-up director is David Caesar.

CJZ CEO Matt Campbell said the company was always convinced of the project’s potential.

“From its embryonic state some 10 years ago we always believed Darby and Joan would become a favourite crime solving couple,” he said.

“We are so pleased Acorn could see what we were trying to say with the series and have backed it every inch of the way since the pitch. We couldn’t want for a better partner. Also Screen Australia and Screen Queensland for their invaluable support as always.”

Acorn Media International is the international distributor of the series, which will world premiere exclusively on Acorn TV in Australia, US, Canada, the United Kingdom, Latin America, Spain, Portugal, among others in 2022.

Acorn Media Enterprises managing director Catherine Mackin said she believed the series’ mix of intrigue, adventure and mystery would “greatly resonate” with viewers, while the characters’ pursuit of love was a “universal touchstone for all ages”.

“Acorn TV is thrilled to work with CJZ on this rollicking road trip adventure series featuring an unlikely pair solving crimes in the Outback,” she said.

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