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BERLINALE 2020 EFM

The sixth Berlinale Co-Pro Series announces its selection

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- The Berlinale Co-Production Market event is inviting ten new international TV projects to be presented to the Berlinale’s Series Market guests

The sixth Berlinale Co-Pro Series announces its selection
Director Óskar Jónasson, who is taking part in Co-Pro Series 2020 with Signals

For the sixth time, the Berlinale Co-Production Market is organising the exclusive Co-Pro Series pitching event, which will run for two days (25 and 26 February) at Berlin’s Zoo Palast cinema, the official venue for all of the events unspooling as part of the Berlinale Series Market & Conference (formerly known as Drama Series Days), which runs from 24-26 February. Besides the industry events, the Berlinale Series 2020 (24-27 February, see the news) titles will also enjoy their premieres at the same venue.

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As was the case last year, ten series creators will be seeking their next international partners for their upcoming drama series from among a curated industry audience comprising producers, commissioning editors, distributors and other financiers. Some of the previous successful projects that were first pitched at Co-Pro Series are Babylon Berlin and Freud (Austria/Germany), which will premiere at Berlin this year. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, since, just like last year, the event, the networking session and the meetings after the pitches are already fully booked.

Host country Germany has one project, Transitniki, written by Heide Schwochow (Cracks in the Shell [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
), Constantin Lieb (Eden – see the news) and Christian Mackrodt, which follows a group of young people from the GDR who set off to find freedom in Eastern Europe. Neighbouring Austria is represented by acclaimed filmmaker Barbara Albert (Mademoiselle Paradis [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Barbara Albert
film profile
]
), who is co-directing the mystery-drama Snow with Sandra Wollner (The Impossible Picture [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
).

The Nordic countries are always present, and from Norway comes the science-fiction project Dome 16, which has been created by Thomas Seeberg Torjussen, known for the dramedy ZombieLars; he also wrote some of the episodes of Valkyrien, the series that participated in the first edition of Co-Pro Series and was also produced by Tordenfilm. Meanwhile, the Icelandic crime series Signals follows a police officer who’s investigating a series of terrorist attacks while her journalist girlfriend is trying to look into the same story. It is directed and co-written by Óskar Jónasson (Reykjavik – Rotterdam [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
).

The Belgian-British series Capturing Big Mouth, which was initially presented at the 2019 Series Mania Forum and will be shown off at Co-Pro Series for the first time, captures the unexpected rise and fall of the notorious Somali pirates, and it’s an adaptation of the real-life story by Mohammad Abdi Hassan. It should be noted that all of the other projects will have a chance to be pitched at Series Mania at the end of March. Furthermore, from Bulgaria, the MIDPOINT 2019 TV Launch-developed project Babyland focuses on the owner of a Ukrainian hotel where fertile women give birth for infertile couples, whose past comes back to haunt her. The project has been written by Martichka Bozhilova, Dianne Jones and Simona Nobile.

Finally, Berlinale winner Palestinian helmer Hany Abu-Assad (Omar) is having his first stab at a series with The King’s Wives, while Russian duo Mikhail Idov and Lily Idova, who wrote some of the episodes of Deutschland ’89 and are better known for scripting Kirill Serebrennikov’s latest feature, Leto (The Summer) [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ilya Stewart
film profile
]
, are presenting their humorous agent series Pawns.

Apart from the pitching session, the Berlinale Series Market conference programme will focus on the topics of the boom in platforms and the expansion of the TV market in “The Streaming Revolution”, how diversity can affect work on set and how to deal with intimacy, and how regional players can position themselves globally, while the EFM “Country in Focus”, Chile, will present new series and their producers. As every year, numerous networking events will be organised in addition to over 30 market screenings.

The projects selected for Co-Pro Series 2020 are as follows:

Capturing Big Mouth (in cooperation with Series Mania)
Writers: Ahsan Naeem, Hans Van Nuffel
Producers: De Mensen (Belgium), Reel One Entertainment (UK)

Babyland
Writers: Martichka Bozhilova, Dianne Jones, Simona Nobile
Producer: Agitprop (Bulgaria)

Dark Victory
Writer-director: Matthew Saville
Producer: Goalpost Television (Australia)

Dome 16
Writer: Thomas Seeberg Torjussen
Producer: Tordenfilm (Norway)

The King’s Wives
Writers: Hany Abu-Assad, Amira Diab
Director: Hany Abu-Assad
Producer: Abbout Productions (Lebanon)

Pawns
Writers: Mikhail Idov, Lily Idova
Producer: Metrafilms (Russia)

Precious
Writers: Joost van Gelder, John F Guerra
Producers: Atlantic Films, Lemming Film (Netherlands)

Signals
Writers: Óskar Jónasson, Margrét Örnólfsdóttir, Sjón, Jóhann Ævar Grímsson
Director: Óskar Jónasson
Producer: Sagafilm (Iceland)

Snow
Writer: Michaela Taschek
Directors: Barbara Albert, Sandra Wollner
Producer: Witcraft Filmproduktion (Austria)

Transitniki
Writers: Heide Schwochow, Constantin Lieb, Christian Mackrodt
Producer: Rohfilm Factory (Germany)

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