GÖTEBORG, Sweden — Swedish prodco Dramacorp has signed with U.K. scribe Michael Robert Johnson (“Sherlock Holmes,” “Mute,” “The Frankenstein Chronicles”) for the English-language supernatural thriller “Heritage” (a working title).
Co-writers are Göteborg-based Morgan Jensen (“Thicker than Water”, “Hassel”) and Theo Gabay. The show, in early development, deals with modern elitism and hereditary. In it, a young female teacher, Evelyn Hemmings, is caught right in the midst of a brutal ritual murder at a prestigious U.K. boarding school in the wilds of Scotland, where the children of the elite study. There is a cover up since national security is at stake. During her private investigation, she realizes that disturbing and ancient dark forces are at play and that the murder has both highly political and occult interests.
Dramacorp’s creative director/executive producer Henrik Jansson-Schweizer said: “We are extremely excited to have an international A-list writer as Michael Robert Johnson, teaming up with some of the most skilled writing talent in Scandinavia on “Heritage”. The writers’ common passion for the genre and their total dedication for storytelling creates a unique universe, filled with complex characters, occultism, power, dark secrets, love and violence, all set at a prestigious and remote U.K. boarding school with a blend of Nordic noir.”
Dramacorp is finalizing the package and will take the project onto the market at Göteborg’s TV Drama Vision confab, Jansson-Schweizer said.
Patrick Nebout, founder-CCO of Beta Film joint venture Dramacorp, as well as exec producer, told Variety that “Heritage” will be part of the company’s yet-to-be-named specialized genre label for cost-effective, YA skewed series and TV movies, inspired by U.S. producer Blumhouse’s model. It will sit next to Dramacorp’s main focus on premium dramas for a broad audience, such as the upcoming English-language “Cannes Confidential”, Dramacorp-Pampas Studios’ “Agent Hamilton” and “The Great Century” series.
Nebout sees the in-the-works genre label as a European collaboration, whereby other European producers and talents would join in under the same label with their own unique genre concepts, to be pitched as a slate to local and global platforms. “Our ambition is to regroup talent to raise financing, as the lack of funding for genre series is still an issue in Europe,” continues Nebout.
Details of Dramacorp’s specialized label will be announced soon.
Meanwhile, the prodco’s first YA short-form series, the Swedish language horror “Cryptid,” produced for NENT Group’s Nordic streamer Viaplay, has reached post-production. The nail-biting drama, penned by Jensen, Jansson-Schweizer (“Thicker than Water”, ”Midnight Sun”), and helmed by David Berron (“Black Lake”), will bow in fall 2020.
Elsewhere, the premium blue-sky procedural “Cannes Confidential”-Dramacorp’s first foray into the English language- is in pre-production. The eight-part series is written by U.K.-based Chris Murray (“Midsomer Murders”, Agatha Raisin”).
Also slated for an end-of-year shoot is Dramacorp/Pampas Productions’ second season of “Agent Hamilton”, greenlit by C More/TV4. Jakob Oftebro will reprise his role as famous Swedish agent Carl Hamilton, created by Jan Guillou. Next is “Bridge-Builders,” the first installment in “The Great Century” epic saga -also adapted from Jan Guillou book series- which is currently at the development and financing stage.