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German Streamer Joyn Moves Into Original Content With Political Thriller ‘Dignity’

Joyn, the new German streaming service backed by local media giant ProSiebenSat.1 and Discovery, has ordered its first original series, “Dignity,” a political thriller about the hunt for an ex-Nazi who has set up a cult in Chile.

Joyn is a free platform offering live streaming of 55 channels, including German pubcasters ARD and ZDF, as well as a 30-day catchup library. The service, which launched in June, said it already has 3.8 million active monthly users, who do not have to register or subscribe.

Joyn has bought international dramas to bolster its offering, including Alex Pina’s acclaimed Spanish drama “The Pier.” The new, eight-episode “Dignity” is its first original commission, in partnership with Chile’s MEGA, and is expected to land on Joyn in December and in Chile next year.

Produced by Germany’s Story House Prods. and Chile’s Invercine & Wood, the series takes its inspiration from a real-life German cult in Chile, Colonia Dignidad, which was established by an ex-Nazi soldier, Paul Schaefer. The cult committed torture, child abuse and murder within its sprawling compound with the blessing of the Pinochet regime. The show, created by María Elena Wood and Patricio Pereira and written by Andreas Gutzeit, centers on a young prosecutor’s pursuit of Schaefer and possible hidden agenda in doing so.

Red Arrow Studios International, which has global distribution rights, will launch the show at Mipcom along with Joyn and MEGA.

“Joyn believes in local storytelling, and this story is of German and international relevance,” Katja Hofem, CCMO and managing director of Joyn. “This production is an important step for our young platform and shows our commitment to original production.”

Joyn is backed equally by ProSiebenSat.1 and Discovery. It aims to become Germany’s most comprehensive local streamer, and is part of a trend in Europe of broadcaster partnerships created to compete with international streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon. Salto in France and BritBox in Britain are similar ventures.

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