We’re pleased to reveal that the next production scheduled to commence at The Bottle Yard Studios is new Netflix Original series The Last Bus, made by Bristol production company Wildseed Studios.
The 10-part live-action children’s series is a sci-fi road trip adventure that tells the story of a group of mismatched school kids who band together to face a fearsome new machine intelligence.
Bristol-based Wildseed Studios is a multi award-winning scripted entertainment production company, specialising in harnessing exciting new talent to make premium shows for older kids, family and young adult audiences. It was founded in 2013 by Managing Director Miles Bullough (Aardman, Absolutely) and Creative Director Jesse Cleverly (BBC, Royal Court Theatre) who met while working as producer and buyer on Shaun the Sheep.
The Last Bus is being written and created by Paul Neafcy (pictured above left), who was talent-spotted by Wildseed making mobile-phone films on YouTube from his bedroom. Wildseed worked with Paul to develop two series – Phillip Human and PrankMe – for SVoD service Fullscreen before developing a premium scripted sci-fi drama concept and a 10-minute pilot that convinced Netflix this new creator was worth a full Original commission
As well as experienced hands Lawrence Gough and Steve Hughes, new directors on The Last Bus include emerging talent Drew Casson (pictured above right) and Nour Wazzi. Now still only 25 years old, Wildseed met YouTube creator Drew Casson when he was just 18 and produced Hungerford with him, a low budget 80-minute multi-award winning feature film and then its sequel The Darkest Dawn, both picked up by Netflix. Wildseed worked with rising young director Nour Wazzi on proof of concept film The Moderators before asking her to direct two episodes of The Last Bus.
The substantial series will be produced in Bristol/the South West and shot in the Bottle Yard Studios, with pre-production starting this summer and shooting beginning in the autumn. Cast will combine proven talent with some kids who have never acted before, cast from a trawl of thousands of young people.
Miles Bullough, Managing Director and Jesse Cleverley, Creative Director and co-founders of Wildseed Studios (pictured below) said: “Although at the top level The Last Bus is a shamelessly entertaining sci-fi romp, at another level it is a powerful eco-fable about how the younger generation must be empowered to make very different choices from the generation which preceded it when it comes to the two big challenges of the age – environmental breakdown and hugely sophisticated artificial intelligence.
“Whilst we have the technology to repair the ecosystem, vested interests seem determined to prevent the change we need to make, at the speed we need to make it. Youth climate strikes and myriad other forms of activism tell us, quite rightly, this is the issue which concerns this audience the most – after all it is their futures they are trying to save, not ours.
“It is also true that increasingly, artificial intelligence can out-think humanity – and how we choose to deploy the tools that we are now capable of inventing could well determine humanity’s fate over the next 100 years.
“We hope that by producing The Last Bus, and releasing it simultaneously to a global audience, we will have made a small contribution to the pool of courage young people will need to draw upon in the years ahead.
“We are proud and delighted that Netflix has championed the production of this ambitious, entertaining and important show and we look forward to working with the excellent team we have assembled in order to execute this to the highest possible standard.”