Netflix acquires French crime drama La Forêt

French crime drama is now a real force in the international canon, thanks to Spiral and Witnesses, and recently Netflix has been plundering the world, securing crime dramas from here, there and everywhere. And that includes France.

We’ve already had La Mante and The Frozen Dead, and we have La Forêt (The Forest), a six-part series starring Samuel Labarthe and Suzanne Clément.

So here’s the synopsis:

In a small and quiet village in the Ardennes, a 16-year-old girl disappears in the forest in the middle of the night. Captain Gaspard Deker, former military and freshly arrived, leads the investigation with Virginie Musso, the local police officer. Soon enough, the leads multiply and one after another the villagers are listed as suspects.

And here’s a trailer:

Not only do we have a synopsis and a trailer, we also have a transmission date:

La Forêt: From Friday 29th June, Netflix

BBC confirms transmission date for Craith/Hidden

We reviewed Welsh-language series Craith earlier this year when it debuted on S4C but, like Hinterland/Y Gwyll and Un Bor Mercher/Keeping Faith before it, we knew that an-English language version would be appearing on both BBC One Wales and BBC Four soon after.

(One of the more incredible things about these Welsh-language dramas is that the cast and crew shoot two versions, in two different languages, which always boggles my mind.)

Anyway, Craith – or Hidden as we shall now call it – is coming in English-language form.

The story?

When the body of a missing young woman is found in a disused quarry, DI Cadi John, played by Sian Reese-Williams, leads an investigation that unearths a dangerous and disturbing reality.

Hidden is an eight-part drama made up of interweaving stories, all linked by a single case – the abduction and incarceration of a young woman; a woman failed by the police and held in captivity for years, high in the Snowdonia mountains.

Through the highs and lows of the plot, through precise performances, we enter a hidden world full of intrigue, suspense and tension.

Yes, we reviewed it and yes, it was excellent, with superb performances all-round and the incredible Snowdonian landscape looming large in the background.

Anyway, you can watch Hidden on…

BBC One Wales: Wednesday 6th June, 9pm
BBC Four: Saturday 9th June, 9pm


BBC announces new ‘psycho thriller’ from Tom Rob Smith

Another big announcement from the BBC today.

Anyone who’s been following crime drama for the past few years that Tom Rob Smith is an exciting, fresh and invigorating new voice, and he’s the man who wrote the brilliant The Assassination Of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.

The BBC has announced that he has penned a new series, Motherfatherson, but most of the press seems to be centring on the fact that Richard Gere will star in the series, the first time he’s appeared in a TV drama for 30 years. Fair enough, but we’re more excited about new Tom Rob Smith.

So, Motherfatherson, described in some quarters as a ‘psycho thriller’.

Gere will head the cast alongside Helen McCrory (Peaky Blinders, Harry Potter) and Billy Howle (Witness for the Prosecution) as the family at the heart of the eight-part original drama.

Gere plays Max, a charismatic self-made American businessman with media outlets in London and around the world. McCrory is Kathryn, a British heiress who has been estranged from Max following the breakdown of their marriage some years before. Their 30 year-old son, Caden (Howle), runs Max’s UK newspaper and is primed to follow in his father’s footsteps as one of the most powerful men in the world.

But when Caden’s self-destructive lifestyle spirals out of control, the devastating consequences threaten the future of the family, its empire, and a country on the brink of change.

Gere said: “It’s been almost 30 years since I worked in television. I’m so pleased to be working now with the BBC on this extraordinary eight-hour project with such talented people and which resonates so much to the time we live in.”

More news etc etc

Sky Atlantic confirms Get Shorty transmission date

Here’s another one of those ‘why are they doing another version of that?’ series. The late, great crime writer, Elmore Leonard, was revered in many circles and one of his most popular novels was Get Shorty.

It was made into a (successful) film in the mid-1990s (starring John Travolta), but now it’s back, this time starring Irish comedian and actor, Chris O’Dowd.

Here’s a trailer:

The series follows Miles Daly (O’Dowd), muscle for a Nevada crime ring who tries to become a movie producer in Hollywood as a means to leave his criminal past behind and win back his recently-estranged family. There, he meets Rick Moreweather (Ray Romano), a washed-up producer of low-quality films who is desperately hanging on to the rungs of Hollywood relevancy and begrudgingly becomes Miles’ partner and guide through the maze of show business.  Along with his criminal associate Louis (Sean Bridgers), Miles attempts to keep his worlds from colliding as he balances the demands of filmmaking while keeping the suspicions of the crime ring’s chief – and production bankroll – Amara (Lidia Porto) and her dangerous nephew, Yago (Goya Robles) at bay.

Get Shorty: Wednesday 6th June, 9pm, Sky Atlantic