Beta Film has closed the first deal for the Croatian-Ukrainian crime drama series “The Silence.” The six-hour series about human trafficking will be premiered by ZDF/ARTE, which comes on board also as co-producer. Moreover, Beta signed deals with HBO Europe for the CEE region, as well as with Lumière for Flemish-speaking Benelux. Other territories are currently being negotiated.
The HRT and Drugi Plan series is a co-production with Beta Film, Star Media, and OLL.TV and ZDF/ARTE is based on the critically acclaimed books by Drago Hedl that uncovered human and weapons trafficking throughout Eastern Europe. Highly praised by the Italian press, the books were listed among the 33 best European crime novels of 2018. In attendance of leading actress Kseniia Mishina (Fair Trade), “The Silence” premiered at NEM Dubrovnik last summer.
“The Silence” is among a growing slate of prestige productions Beta is selling from the Eastern European region as part of the company’s new initiative to co-finance and co-produce more projects in the area. The story revolves around a series of girls found dead: the first drowned, the second overdosed, the third hit by a car. It appears there is a serial killer in Osijek, Croatia. Vladimir, the detective on the case, is plagued by personal hardship. Stribor, a reporter, notches him towards a maze of corruption, trafficking, and politics where the most vulnerable girls are victimized. When Ukrainian ex-pat Olga, wife of a powerful politician, finds her niece to be one of the victims, the three forms an unlikely team. Together they plunge into the depths of underage trafficking that crosses Eastern European borders.