The French series brimming with suspense will be coming to UK screens
In October 2014, it was announced that Channel 4 had acquired the rights to air the brand new six-part French crime series and the wait is almost over as Witnesses is due to mesmerise UK audiences this month.
The first episode tantalised festival goers on the first day of Nordicana: Nordic Noir & Beyond Live 2015 as it screened on the Main Stage to dedicated fans of the European crime genre. Following critically received shows from France, including the mystery thrilling The Returned (2012– ), violent detective series Braquo (2009– ) and police procedural drama Spiral (2005– ), Witnesses is set to continue the French quality televisual remit.
Witnesses is a murder mystery created by Marc Herpoux and Hervé Hadmar, set in the town of Tréport which has become the scene of the crime for a series of bizarrely staged homicides. The killer’s modus operandi is to display the bodies of its victims in a family diorama inside the walls of model homes.
The series stars Thierry Lhermitte (Le Dîner de Cons, 1998 and Doc Martin, 2011-2015) as detective Paul Maisonneuve who is partnered with investigator Sandra Winckler (Marie Dompnier) to solve the murders that have shaken the coastal village of Normandy. According to Variety, “The series, which has the singular and gritty atmosphere reminiscent of a Scandinavian crime drama, is darker and more daring that local shows that are traditionally commissioned by the French public broadcaster.” As well as the morbidly alluring narrative, the series has been commented in for its stunning cinematography of the French rural landscape; adding a rich, visual element for viewers to become immersed.
A second season has already been announced to air in France later this year.
Witnesses is scheduled to air on Channel 4 very soon with the date to be confirmed.