BBC4 buys new Swedish and Italian dramas

Arne Dahl and Inspector De Luca will air later this year


BBC4, the channel that brought us The Killing, The Bridge, Borgen and Inspector Montalbano, has invested in two new Euro-crime dramas.


Later this year, BBC4 will air Swedish five-part series Arne Dahl and Italian period sleuther Inspector De Luca.

“These acquisitions are part of BBC4’s ongoing mission to give viewers an excuse to stay in on a Saturday night by offering an entertaining alternative to Saturday TV,” channel controller Richard Klein said.

“Arne Dahl continues in the tradition of The Killing and Wallander in portraying a social hinterland through the prism of the day-to-day of police investigation; and Inspector De Luca is a clever and hugely entertaining drama that portrays wartime Italy in a way that is both very familiar to our own war time experiences and intriguingly foreign.”

BBC4 has increased its share of the primetime Saturday-night audience from 1% to 3% since concentrating on high-quality drama imports.

Arne Dahl is not the name of a fictional detective – it’s the author (a pseudonym of Jan Arnald) of the novels upon which the series is based, about a team of elite detectives – the “A group” – who solve major crimes. The first story is The Blinded Man, which begins with the murder of two powerful financiers by a killer who leaves no clues. The dramatisation was shown on Swedish television, under the original title Misterioso, in 2011.

Inspector De Luca is a four-parter about a plain-speaking, womanising detective, based on the novels by Carlo Lucarelli and set in and around Bologna during Mussolini’s rule. 

In 2013, BBC4 will also show a new four-part series of Inspector Montalbano, as well as the prequel Young Montalbano; a second series of Danish/Swedish smash The Bridge; and series three of Borgen, which was previously not expected to air until 2014.


Watch a trailer for all BBC4’s 2013 imports below.