No one needs to tell the Beeb about the success of crime dramas set in the grim hinterlands of Northern Europe, but rather than purchase their latest offering, the BBC have decided to commission one for themselves.
As you can probably guess, Shetland will be based on the remote islands of Scotland rather than the desolate urban wastelands of Scandinavia, and the two-part drama will star Douglas Henshall as Detective Jimmy Perez, a recently widowed native Shetlander who has returned to the island after many years away.
Described as “a powerful murder-mystery set against the stunning Scottish backdrop of the Shetland Islesâ? the programme is written by David Kane (The Field Of Blood, Taggart, Rebus) and based on a book by award-winning crime novelist Ann Cleeves. It will also be produced by the woman behind Merlin and Waterloo Road, and directed by the man responsible for Vera, Silk and Five Days.
Elaine Collins, Executive Producer, ITV Studios, added: âWe are delighted to be working with the BBC on this commission. Shetland combines eccentric yet warm characters and a classic murder mystery story with the beautiful landscape and rich history of the Shetland Islands and we believe it will be hugely popular with viewers.â?
Christopher Aird, Head of Drama, Scotland and Executive Producer, BBC said: âShetland has a fantastic combination of writing, acting, directing and producing talent. It is a hugely exciting story and part of a project to bring the very best drama to BBC Scotland in the coming years.â?