The European arm of the WarnerMedia unit has greenlit six-part Polish thriller 'The Thaw' from Marta Szymanek, with production set to kick off in January.
HBO Europe, looking to keep pace with global streaming services and an exploding market for local-language originals, has greenlit a new Polish crime drama, The Thaw, from Marta Szymanek, one of the writers on the WarnerMedia unit's hit Polish series The Border.
The Thaw follows a female police officer, a single mom trying to balance life and work, is confronted with the case of her life after the body of a young, unidentified woman if discovered under the melting ice after the spring thaw. HBO Europe has given a six-episode order for the series, which Szymanek will write and Xawery Zulawski Bird Talk will direct.
Production will kick off in the northwest Polish city of Szczecin in late January.
Bogumil Lipski will produce The Thaw for HBO Europe with HBO Europe's Izabela Lopuch, Johnathan Young and Antony Root as executive producers. Andrzej Besztak is the executive producer for Magnolia Films.
“This time we invite the audience into the world of a thirty-something year-old police officer,” said Lipski. “The compelling crime layer of the show reveals much more —a deeply human and painfully relevant story about things that are most challenging —grief, mourning, loneliness, and the sense of being left behind.”
The Border, a drama that follows the fraught lives of Polish border guards along the Bieszczady Mountains, the region that marks a boundary between the European Union and Ukraine, has been a ratings smash for HBO, becoming the most-watched series on HBO Poland. The third season is currently on air.
HBO has ramped up its originals production in Europe in the past year, in part to compete with the likes of Netflix and new streaming services such as Disney+. HBO Europe this year rolled out its first original series in Scandinavia, has ordered a new 10-part comedy series in Spain and bulked up its originals slate in Romania with a new comic caper series Tuff Money.
Mike does some carpentry! Kim and Jimmy hatch a plan! No Nacho! Meet Mr. X! Kim and Jimmy
There’s a lot I love about Better Call Saul, but at the top of the list is Kim Wexler. I firmly believe she’s one of the most fascinating characters on TV right now. Part of that comes from how complex the character is written. And part of it comes from Rhea Seehorn‘s unparalleled performance. Seehorn is one of those actors who is very good at listening, and while you might think that sounds easy, it’s not. Many actors are great at pretending they’re listening, but with Seehorn, you always buy it.
And not only is she good at listening, but she’s also good at conveying her innermost thoughts. Again: no easy feat. But the way Seehorn furrows her brow, or silently looks on, speaks volumes. Kim is also a fascinating character because she’s one of the few individuals on this show whose fate is a mystery. We know how Mike and Gus are going to end up dead. We know how Jimmy is going to end up in hiding, managing a Cinnabon. But what of Kim? At some point, she and Jimmy have to part ways. It’s inevitable. And while there’s an optimistic chance that Kim gets away clean, it’s unlikely. Does anyone get away clean in the Better Call Saul/Breaking Bad universe? Even Jesse Pinkman, who got a shot at redemption in the follow-up film El Camino, is saddled with a lifetime of emotional – and physical – scars.
With that in mind, it seems very likely that Kim is headed towards disaster. Which makes this second-to-last season of Better Call Saul all the tenser. Because Kim’s day of reckoning is likely fast approaching, and we can already see the early warning signs. After several seasons of mostly resisting Jimmy’s crooked ways Kim is now all-in on bending the rules to suit her own needs. Sure, deep down she’s telling herself she’s doing these things for the right reasons – she wants to help cranky old Mr. Acker keep his house. But does she really care about Acker? At one point in this episode, even Jimmy asks: “Is Acker worth it?”
Kim thinks so. Or at least that’s what he’s telling herself. And that’s what she’s unleashed Jimmy onto the situation. Jimmy, being Jimmy, uses various cons and tricks to delay the destruction of Acker’s home – hiding the address on the mailbox, sprinkling potentially radioactive particles on the land, burying archeological remains, staging a phony miracle in the form of a stain that looks kind of like Jesus. It’s all pretty ludicrous, but it works to stall things.
A sensible person might cut their losses and let Jimmy win. But Kevin, owner of Mesa Verde, won’t hear it. He refuses to be beaten by Jimmy and he’s...
Although “The L Word: Generation Q” may have tried desperately to speak to a “new generation” of queer women and non-binary folks, fresher creative voices quickly rose to the top in its place. Though people still watched. Showtime’s “Work in Progress” was the best queer comedy of the year, Netflix’s “Feel Good” was an unexpected delight, and “Vida” is returning just in time for queer audiences to catch up on the best show about queer women of color on TV. Yet another contender released a promising first trailer today: “Betty” is a stylish and youthful portrait of Brooklyn teen skaters that already appears extremely queer.
The six-part half-hour arrives on HBO from filmmaker Crystal Moselle, who quickly made waves in 2015 with her her riveting documentary hybrid “The Wolfpack.” “Betty” is adapted from her second feature, the similarly hybridized “Skate Kitchen,” which followed a group of teenage girl skaters in New York City. The film premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival to positive reviews and was released by Magnolia Pictures that year.
In his B+ review of “Skate Kitchen” out of Sundance, IndieWire’s Eric Kohn wrote: “The streetwise alternative to ‘Girls,’ the movie weaves together such a complete vision of its subjects that the rest of the world barely exists. Of course, there's a long-standing precedent to capturing this subculture — ‘Kids’ did it, with more adventurous storytelling twists, more than 20 years ago — but Moselle's subjects hold their own with the surprising ability to clarify their emotions through the cathartic process of hanging out.”
“Betty” features many of the film’s original stars, most of whom had not acted before, including Kabrina Adams, Dede Lovelace, Nina Moran, Rachelle Vinberg, and Ajani Russell. All accomplished skaters in their own right, the first trailer shows the charismatic crew navigating various crushes and friendship trials with compelling panache and humor.
“Betty” is directed, co-written, and executive produced by Moselle. Lesley Arfin and Patricia Breen are also co-writers. Arfin, who also EPs, is a comedy writer best known for co-creating the Netflix series “Love” with Judd Apatow and Paul Rust.
HBO will release “Betty” beginning May 1 at 11 pm ET. Check out the exciting first trailer below: