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Why it took nearly 15 years for Danish hit Forbrydelsen to make its debut on American TV

  • Forbrydelsen, the Danish police procedural drama that AMC adapted as The Killing in 2011, recently made its debut on boutique streaming service Topic -- nearly 15 years after its January 2007 premiere. “The Killing was lauded for its unique storytelling, which followed a Danish detective inspector (played by Sofie Gråbøl) as she solves a murder case," explains Variety's Michael Schneider. "Each episode represents a day in the investigation. The show eventually made its way to more than 120 countries, mostly in the early part of the last decade. The international success of The Killing foretold the globalization of worldwide TV hits hailing from all parts of the globe, not just the usual territories like the U.S. and the U.K. — predating the streaming revolution, which has made it much easier to watch such shows. Now, international hits such as Netflix’s Squid Games and La Casa de Papel have become more frequent." Why did it take so long for Forbrydelsen to find a U.S. home? "Forbrydelsen didn’t find a linear U.S. network interested in acquiring episodes back in the day," says Schneider. "It was only recently that Danish production company DR ironed out streaming VOD rights and could start selling it worldwide — and that’s when Topic came calling."

    TOPICS: Forbrydelsen, Topic, The Killing, Retro TV