CBeebies has commissioned Apple Tree House, a new 30-part drama series from the producers of Rastamouse, while CBBC has snapped up another season of its documentary series My Life (pictured).
Created by Rastamouse vocal talent William Vanderpuye, along with Maria Timotheou and Akindele Akinsiku, Apple Tree House is set in a vibrant inner-city estate and follows the lives of two children, Mali (Aamir Tai), who has just moved in, and his new best friend Sam (Miranda Sarfo Peprah), the estate caretaker’s daughter.
The 30 x 15-minute series commissioned by CBeebies controller Kay Benbow sees its protagonists solve daily childhood problems and engage with a diverse cast of family members, friends and neighbors. Rastamouse producers Gregory Boardman and Eugenio Perez are producing the series for rights holder Five Apples, and it will begin production next month at Three Mills Studio and on location in East London. Michael Towner, meanwhile, is executive producing for CBeebies, which expects to premiere the series in 2017. Rastamouse composer Andrew Kingslow has also been tapped to produce the show’s original songs and soundtrack.
As for My Life, the award-winning doc series will return to CBBC later this year with a new batch of films that follow the lives of UK children with extraordinary personal stories to tell. Each made by a different indie prodco, the films encompass a range of stories from how two Syrian refugee siblings must adapt to their new life in Bristol (Drummer TV’s Where’s My Home?), to a survival tale of two brothers living on a desert island (MCC Media’s Our Desert Island).
Additional films include Factory Films’ What Make Me Tic, a story about two brothers coping with Tourette’s Syndrome, Blakeway North’s Butterfly Girl that features a successful 11-year-old vlogger who’s awaiting surgery for a rare medical condition, and CTVC’s Making Waves, which chronicles the life of a Scottish surfer as she prepares for her first World Surf Championships.
CBBC controller Cheryl Taylor commissioned the series, which is executive produced by CBBC’s Kez Margrie. All of the films currently have working titles.