Various deals on Nordic TV Drama at MIPTV

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 5.36.28 pm

Article via the Nordisk Film and TV Fund

Nordic content creators, producers and financiers benefited this year from exceptional visibility thanks to the ‘Focus on the Nordics’ event at MIPTV in Cannes. Deal making and negotiations on finished and upcoming shows were brisk, especially for long running serials and scripted formats.

Summary of deals and announcements made in Cannes:

ZDF Enterprises Closes Nordic package with Lumiere
Under the deal signed during MIPTV between the two partners, Benelux’s biggest buyer of Nordic content acquired rights to the Finnish eco-thriller Tellus, Season 3 of the Swedish crime series Johan Falk and Season 2 of the Swedish elite police unit Arne Dahl. The Swedish political thriller Blue Eyes produced by Strix Drama also attracted a lot of interest. Fred Burcksen ZDFE Vice President and COO describes the series as a SwedishHouse of Cards. “Blue Eyes is a high concept, long overdue approach to tell current political tendencies in Europe in a fictional authentic setting.“

Svensk Sale of Heavy Water War to the UK
Swedish giant Svensk Filmindustri’s international sales arm inked a deal with Channel Four and Arrow Films on the Norwegian hit WW2 drama The Heavy Water War (pictured) produced by Filmkameratene. The series is the most watched Norwegian TV series ever and the last episode was followed by 30% of the Norwegian popular or 1.4 million people. So far 17 territories have acquired rights to the war drama.

DR Sales Signs multi-deal with ARTE
Danish pubcaster DR’s sales arm has sold the in-house TV drama Broke and SF Film’s modern crime show Norskov to French/German ARTE. Benelux’s Lumiere also came on board Henrik Ruben Genz’s comedy drama Broke created by Kim Fupz Aakesson. The upcoming crime series Follow the Money that had a special screening at MIP was another hot property in Cannes. “The response to the screening has been excellent and we expect to close some key territories in the near future,” said Helene Aurø, Sales are Marketing Director for DR Sales. Buyers also discussed remake rights on the series set to premiere on DR1 in February 2016.  Other TV drama deals closed in Cannes include the fantasy series Heartless from Fridthjof Film, sold to France 4, and the second season of The Legacy, sold to Israel and Slovenia.

DRG Gets Hooked from Finnish Moskito
The upcoming Finnish series Hooked (10×60’) produced by Moskito Television (Black Widows) has been picked up for world distribution by London-based DRG. The crime series written by Laura Suhonen focuses on drug squad investigator (Tommi Eronen) and his first love, an ex-addict (Matleena Kuusniemi) who starts to work with him as a criminal informant.

Noel Hedges, EVP of Content for DRG said: “Buyers are increasingly interested in seeing what is coming out of Nordic territories. Finland particularly is seen as an interesting and creative hub for drama with some strong concepts. Hooked is getting closely looked at by a number of buyers intrigued by its strong direction and powerful storyline, both as the finished Finnish version and also as a remake.”

Svensk Bets on new Scandi Crime adaptation
Svensk Filmindustri has acquired rights to develop the new Nordic noir TV series A Darker Sky, part of a Gran Canarias-set fiction series co-written by Sweden’s Mari Jungstedt and Norway’s Ruben Eliassen (Phenomena). A Darker Sky was published in Sweden last January and sold over 80,000 copies.

French and Dutch Facelift for Rita
SF Film Production’s series about the cool school teacher with an attitude played by Mille Dinesen (pictured), will be remade in France and the Netherlands for local audiences. French production outfit Authentic will produce for TF1 and Eyeworks for the Netherlands. The news was announced by C21media in Cannes. The third season – co-financed by Netflix – is currently airing successfully on TV2. DR Sales was representing Season 1,2,3 in Cannes.

Emma Vestrheim

Emma Vestrheim is the editor-in-chief of Cinema Scandinavia. Originally from Australia, she is now based in Bergen, Norway, and attends major Nordic film festivals to conduct interviews and review new films.