As MIPCOM closed its doors yesterday, sales companies were going through their deal memos and trying to time their sales announcement with broadcasters/OTT groups’ own communication strategies. Mirroring the increased competition for quality Nordic scripted content, original shows were snapped ahead of the domestic premiere, new projects in development or production were picked up for world distribution while the buyout remake market added sweetening to deal making.

“There are more opportunities on the market, but it’s also getting tougher as all players are looking for high premium content, willing to compromise and collaborate in varied ways", noted Dynamic Television’s managing partner Klaus Zimmermann.

Here under is a summary of selected announcements on Nordic scripted dramas. 

  • DR Sales closed The Legacy season 3 to Australia for DVD (High Gloss), Israel, Benelux (Lumiere) and the UK (Arrow Films). The third and final season of DR’s hit family drama is set to air on the Danish public channel in January 2017. 
    Follow the Money was sold to Switzerland (RTS) and to Iran, Borgen to Israel and at press time, several offers were being negotiated on the upcoming Icelandic crime series The Valhalla Murders (8x50’) directed by Thordur Palsson and produced by True North and RUV. The premium drama set to be delivered in 2017 is part of a new partnership between DR Sales and RUV.
    Helene Aurø, Sales and Marketing Director stressed the vibrant remake market, and closed a brand new option deal with India on The Killing/Forbrydelsen. The Danish relationship comedy drama Splitting up Together (already optioned for the US) raised interest from Canada, France and Belgium. 
  • Nordic World also reported strong interest on the scripted format of the Norwegian comedy Next Summer (TVNorge). “We received good reactions from the US pilot (optioned by Fox) and now Germany, Benelux and the UK are coming forward as well”, said CEO Espen Huseby. 
  • Yle Sales sold the new youth-oriented Finnish series Mental to Swedish UR. The black comedy about four young people who end up in a psychiatric hospital aired on Yle this summer. Sales rep Maria Kivinen also started discussing the comedy show Wingman (premiere late 2016 on Yle Areena) as well as Heroes of the Baltic Sea, a hybrid game show and fiction drama in five episodes directed by AJ Annila.
  • Global Screen’s high profile Icelandic drama Fangar/Prisoners attracted a lot of interest following its presentation on Wednesday as part of MIPCOM’s International Drama Screenings. So far broadcasters attached to the 6x50’ show directed and co-written by Ragnar Bragason comprise DR, SVT, NRK, YLE and Canal+ Poland. The TV drama premieres on RUV January 1st, 2017. 
  • DRG reported very strong buyers’ reactions on the two Norwegian series Nobel (currently airing successfully on NRK) and upcoming thriller/western Monster directed by Anne Sewitsky (Homesick).
    Noel Hedges, EVP content & acquisitions said: “Both series have been fantastically received at MIPCOM.  We actually launched Nobel at MIPTV in April and have since closed several major international deals, details of which will be announced in due course. Monster was a premiere launch at MIPCOM and it’s been getting a fantastic response from buyers – impressed by its visual style and rich sense of location and character.  Once more of buyers have screened episodes of the series, we expect to be closing strong deals.” 
  • Studiocanal had a major launch on Monday of the Swedish/French crime drama Midnight Sun co-created and directed by Måns Mårlind and Björn Stein. The same day sales were announced to NRK, DR, RUV, MTV3, ZDF in Germany, SBS in Australia, HOT in Israel, VRT in Belgium, and Lumiere in Benelux. The series premieres on SVT this Sunday. Studiocanal also started pre-selling the Danish crime thriller Below the Surface created by Kasper Barfoed for SAM Productions and Kanal5/Discovery Denmark.
  • Dynamic Television picked up the Danish/German crime drama Dan Sommersdahl (TV2 DK) based on Danish author Anna Grue’s best-selling book series and continued pre-selling the Icelandic noir Trapped Season 2. Federation Entertainment, used the very good opening figures of Bordertown on Finnish Yle (over 1.1 million viewers) to push on global sales. Previous deals were closed with SKY Deutschland (Germany) CanalPlay (France) and Belgium VRT. 
  • Beta Film continued selling the Norwegian hit web series Skam and closed major deals on its high profile Sofia Helin vehicle The Same Sky directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel. The German family drama set in Cold War Berlin was sold to Netflix for the English speaking world and to all Nordic pubcasters (DR, NRK, SVT, RUV, Yle) among others. 
  • Eccho Rights picked up world rights to two upcoming Swedish dramas. The crime series Honour is set in an all-female human rights law firm whose team is endangered by the controversial cases they handle. Sofia Helin and Alexandra Rapaport are in the lead. Gåsmamman actress Rapaport also stars in Brink, about a female army lieutenant on leave who battles against big-game poachers and the international crime syndicate behind them.