BBC Four is hoping to further enhance its reputation as the home of the best acquired drama from around the world after picking up rights to new Swedish and Italian series.
The BBC channel first launched French crime drama Spiral in 2006 and has since unearthed US period hit Mad Men, Swedish cop series Wallander, Italy’s Inspector Montalbano, Australia’s The Slap, Swedish/Danish coproduction The Bridge and Danish gems The Killing and Borgen.
In particular, it has established a primetime slot on Saturday nights that provides UK viewers with an alternative to shiny floor entertainment shows.
BBC Four is now lining up two new shows to air this year: Swedish crime series Arne Dahl and Italian drama Inspector Da Luca.
Arne Dahl – the pseudonym of the author Jan Arnald – is based on five of Dahl’s novels about a team of elite specialists who investigate the dark side of society, beginning with The Blinded Man. It is produced by Filmlance and written by Rolf Börjlind and Cecilia Börjlind. It first aired on Swedish public broadcaster SVT.
Inspector Da Luca, produced by Ager 3 and Italian broadcaster Rai, is a four-part period crime series based on the novels by Carlo Lucarelli. The story is set in and around Bologna during Mussolini’s dictatorship. It first aired on Italian public broadcaster Rai.
BBC Four has also revealed details of other acquired series due to air on the channel this year.
Young Montalbano, set in the early 1990s, is a prequel series to Inspector Montalbano and gives an insight into the Italian policeman’s early life. It is written by Andrea Camilleri.
Five new episodes of Inspector Montalbano are also due to air alongside season two of The Bridge, produced by Denmark’s Nimbus Film and Filmlance in Sweden.
Season three of Borgen will conclude the Danish political drama, made by public broadcaster DR.
From Australia comes Howzat! Kerry Packer’s War (2×85′), a biographical story of the media mogul who created World Series Cricket that debuted down under on Nine Network last year.