SF Studios produces new Danish thriller series OXEN in co-production with SquareOne Productions for the Danish Broadcaster TV 2 and German pubcaster and REinvent handles international sales.
OXEN is directed by Jannik Johansen and stars Jacob Lohmann in the leading role. The shooting of the six-episode series has just begun near Copenhagen and the series will be released in 2023.
OXEN is the television adaptation of the international bestselling book series of the same name by Jens Henrik Jensen recounting the story war veteran Niels Oxen a former special forces soldier who must conquer his inner demons as he is framed for a series of gruesome murders.
OXEN is directed by Danish veteran director Jannik Johansen (Borgen, 2011; Follow the Money, 2016) and will star Jacob Lohmann (Shorta, 2020) as Niels Oxen alongside Ellen Hillingsø (The Bridge, 2011), Josephine Park (The Investigation, 2020) and Birgitte Hjort Sørensen (Borgen, 2022). They are joined by the German speaking actors Reinout Scholten van Aschat (Sea of time, 2021), Luise Befort (Der Palast, 2021) and Julie Burkhardt (Letzte Spur Berlin, 2020)
Producers Michel Schønnemann and Senia Dremstrup at SF Studios say: “Reading the books, we saw big potential in a TV-series about Niels Oxen, and it has been a pleasure to work with such talented writers developing the material. From the very beginning we have dreamt of making an outstanding series and we are looking forward to bring this story to an international audience.”
Director of Sales at REinvent, Helene Aurø comments: “We are thrilled that ZDF and SquareOne have boarded the series. We have complete faith that the SF Studios and creators of the series will yet again produce a series that will succeed in travelling the world”.
Commissioning Editor at ZDF, Doris Schrenner states: “ZDF is proud to join forces with its German co-producing partner SquareOne Productions, SF Studios and TV 2 to produce the high-end series OXEN, featuring the highly decorated ex-military man Niels Oxen, a new, charismatic hero. ZDF’s commissioning fiction department continues with OXEN, its co-production activity of bestselling Scandinavian brands, enjoying great success with adaptations by Stieg Larsson, Jussi Adler-Olsen and Henning Mankell, among others.”
Senior Editor at TV 2, Mette Vorm: “Our Scandinavian broadcasting partners saw the potential in this intense and character-driven crime at an early stage of the production, and it is wonderful to have them on board. We are confident that the strong team at REinvent will be successful at distributing OXEN to the rest of the world”.
Al Munteanu, CEO at SquareOne Productions adds: “We are elated to finally be in production with such a stellar cast on Oxen after intensive years of development and are equally proud to have Jannik Johansen at the helm of this ambitious, returning series reminiscent of The Bodyguard with multiple twists and turns. OXEN has the DNA for must-see tv for our partners ZDF and TV 2 and for broadcasters and streamers around the world.”
The returnable six-episode series is created by Emmy-award-winning duo Mai Brostrøm and Peter Thorsboe. Their partnership began in 2000, writing the critically acclaimed TV series Unit One which was awarded an International Emmy for Best Drama in 2002. The innovative writing duo are also known for their hit series, The Eagle (2004-2006) and The Protectors (2009-2010), both of which won Emmy Awards for “Best Drama”. More recently, they created the Swedish show Modus (2015-2017), which was nominated for “Best Returning Drama Series” at the C21 International Drama Awards.
At present, the series about Niels Oxen consists of five books, and it differs from other books in the crime and thriller genre in that a good deal of the action takes place in nature, far from cities and police headquarters. The first three books in the series constitute a continuous trilogy: the story of Niels Oxen’s showdown with Danehof, a secret power elite. So far, OXEN has been published in 14 countries and been very well received. In Germany, the books have thus gone straight to the top of the bestseller list.
Niels Oxen is Denmark’s highest decorated war hero. While probing into the death of his best friend, who died during a military mission in Mali, Oxen is wrongfully arrested for possession of narcotics. Oxen is dishonorably discharged from his military duties and retreats to absolute seclusion in Rold Forest. Yet when the owner of the forest, Hans-Otto Corfitzen, is found dead, Oxen becomes the prime suspect. However, the chief of the Danish Security and Intelligence Service, Frigg Mossman, ends up recruiting Oxen to go undercover against the knowledge of her own organization and suddenly he finds himself in the heart of a deadly web of mysteries.
OXEN is produced by SF Studios with producers Michel Schønnemann and Senia Dremstrup for TV 2 Danmark and ZDF in collaboration with SquareOne Productions with support from Nordic Film & TV Fund, Creative Europe and West Danish Film Fund. International sales handled by REinvent International sales.
The series will be broadcasted on TV 2 Denmark and ZDF in Germany in 2023.