×

Migration Drama ‘1899’ Is New Netflix Project From Creators of ‘Dark’

The creators of supernatural series “Dark,” which helped put German drama on the international TV map, have set their next Netflix project, “1899,” a drama that follows European migrants on a fright-filled journey to the U.S.

Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar inked an overall deal with Netflix in June – the first of its kind for the streamer in Europe – following the success of “Dark.” “1899” is the first fruit of that agreement. The show revolves around a migrant steamship heading from London to New York. When the passengers discover another migrant boat adrift, their journey takes an unexpected twist.

“What they find on board will turn their passage to the promised land into a horrifying nightmare,” Netflix said in a statement.

The expectation is that the series will be multi-language, with an international cast. “Dark” was U.S. Netflix’s first German-language original and has run to two seasons. Inasmuch as anyone can tell, given Netflix’s refusal to disclose numbers, it was a hit.

Friese and Odar are charting a new course with “1899.” “The fact that this concept is so radically different from ‘Dark’ is a true testament to their creativity and versatility as creators, and we are excited to continue this journey with them,” said Kelly Luegenbiehl, Netflix’s VP of originals for Europe and Africa.

In a joint statement, Friese and Odar said that what “really made us connect to this idea was the concept of having a truly European show with a mixed cast from different countries.” Immigration is currently a live issue in both the U.S. and Europe, and at the show’s heart “is the question of what unites us and what divides us,” the producer pair said. “And how fear can be a trigger for the latter.”

The two have been working together since Odar’s directing debut “The Silence,” and their credits span film and TV. Odar is a former name on Variety’s “Ten Directors to Watch” list.

More TV

  • The Good Doctor

    From 'Masked Singer' to 'The Good Doctor,' Korean Formats Take Hold on U.S. Screens

    Accepting his award for original screenplay at this year’s Oscars, director Bong Joon Ho triumphantly declared,  “This is a very first Oscar to South Korea.” Little did he know that the second, third and fourth were swiftly coming his way on a night that saw “Parasite” make history. Combine that with the fact that two [...]

  • Shanola Hampton

    'Shameless' Star Shanola Hampton Cast in Lead Role of NBC's 'Night School' Pilot

    Shanola Hampton has been cast in NBC’s multi-camera comedy pilot “Night School,” Variety has learned. Based on the film of the same name, the show follows a mix of adults at a night school GED prep class who unexpectedly bond over their shared experience and find themselves helping each other both inside and outside of the [...]

  • Property Brothers HGTV

    How HGTV Maintains Its Grip on Comfort Television by Constantly Evolving

    When David Bromstad, the host of HGTV’s “My Lottery Dream Home,” won that network’s reality series “Design Star” in 2006, the network was a very different place. “Coming in through a reality show, I was just at the start of the big changes that were happening,” he recalls. “When HGTV started, there were still crafts [...]

  • THE PROUD FAMILY: LOUDER AND PROUDER

    'Proud Family' Revival Ordered to Series at Disney Plus

    “The Proud Family” revival has officially been greenlit at Disney Plus. The Disney Channel animated series will return with all new episodes on the streamer, with most of the original voice cast returning. The returning cast members are: Kyla Pratt as Penny Proud, Tommy Davidson as Oscar Proud, Paula Jai Parker as Trudy Proud, Jo [...]

  • Julie McNamara

    Julie McNamara Upped to Head of Programming at CBS All Access

    In the wake of ViacomCBS’ first earnings report as a newly merged company, CBS All Access is seeing some changes to its exec lineup. Julie McNamara has been elevated to executive vice president, head of programming at the streaming service, up from her prior role as exec VP of original content, a position she has [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content