The conjugal and artistic duo of Baran Bo Odar and Jantje Friese continue impetuously after the success of the German series Dark on Netflix and they are preparing their new series entitled “1899”, which officially starts shootings this month. As it can be assumed by the title, this new series will a period piece and the official synopsis of it implies that they are probably preparing a thriller with elements of horror. It should be noted that it has already been listed on Netflix’s website Recently Netflix released a teaser of the upcoming series:
After the success of Dark, the platform’s first original German series, Netflix fully trusts the creative duo of Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar. Of course, Netflix hasn’t released the official numbers and statistics of the Dark series, but it is known that beyond the recognition of the critics, it is the the third most watched international series in the USA.
In the new series 1899, the official synopsis is the following:
This original series is about a steamboat full of immigrants, which heads west, leaving behind the old continent, from London to New York. The passengers, a group of diverse people of European descent, unite because of their hopes and dreams for a new century and for the future that awaits them in the foreign place they go. When they discover another ship of immigrants ungoverned and off course on the high seas, their voyage takes an unexpected turn. What they discover on board of the ship will turn their passage to the Promised Land into a terrifying nightmare.
The original series revolves around a migrant steamship heading west to leave the old continent from London to New York. The passengers, a mixed bag of European origins, are united by their hopes and dreams for the new century and their future abroad. When they discover another migrant ship adrift on open sea, their journey takes an unexpected turn. What they find on board will turn their passage to the promised land into a horrifying nightmare.
The international cast of the series consists, among others, of: Aneurin Barnard (The White Queen), Andreas Pietschmann (famous actor from Dark where he played the middle-age Jonas), Miguel Bernardeau (Guzman from the series Élite) and Emily Beecham (Into the Badlands). The plan is that each actor will speak his native language in the series, which is in accordance with the story and definitely more convincing and consistent with what it wants to show us, in comparison with other films and series that include immigrants and suddenly everyone speaks English – with an accent of course, even the English actors, because how else can we accept the convention that while we hear English, the actor theoretically impersonates a character who does not speak English.
Being true to the cultures and the languages was really important, we never wanted to have characters from different countries but everyone speaks English,” ….. “We wanted to explore this heart of Europe, where everyone comes from somewhere else and speaks a different language, and language defines so much of your culture and your behaviour.
The series, therefore, will literally be international and will be shot at Babelsberg Studios in Germany, in a completely modernized environment that will technically be similar to the one used by Disney in The Mandalorian series. The time of the shootings has been set until November 2021.
Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar stated they originally planned to travel to Spain, Poland and Scotland for the shootings of the series. However, their plans changed, because of Covid-19 and the prohibitions, making them turn to this new technology, “It is literally a new way of filmmaking,” … “We spoke with the team behind The Mandalorian, including the DP [Barry Baz Idoine] to understand the technology more. It was clearly challenging for each department, but we love challenges so we wanted to try it for this show.”,“We originally planned to travel to Spain, Poland, Scotland, all kinds of locations,” ..“Quite quickly [after the pandemic started] we knew that might not be possible in the new future, so we fully embraced the idea of bringing Europe to us.”.
Furthermore, except of being screenwriters, directors and creators, the duo now also become producers, participating in the creation of the series with their own production company, Dark Ways. “We’ve grown as filmmakers. We’d never done a series before Dark, we learned on the go. We really love challenges so it was a natural step for us to produce as well”.
They assure us that we should expect a strange, wild and crazy series, having in mind the the plot of Dark. Although it won’t contain time travel, the new series will contain a lot of mystery.