'Law & Order' Veteran Rene Balcer Nabs 10-Episode Order for Arctic Drama

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Rene Balcer

Canada's CBC network greenlights the mystery-thriller to shoot in Iqaluit, London and Copenhagen.

Former Law & Order showrunner Rene Balcer has secured a 10-episode order for The Council from Canada's CBC network, which developed the global drama.

The mystery thriller will be produced by Lark Productions, which made Motive for ABC and CTV in Canada, in partnership with Keston International Productions. The Council revolves around a murder in a remote Canadian Arctic town, and will be shot on location starting this summer in Iqaluit, London and Copenhagen.

Balcer is best known for his work on the Dick Wolf-created Law & Order, for which he won a best drama Emmy in 1997 as one of the flagship show’s executive producers. A writer for the long-running drama since its inaugural season in 1991, he was head writer and showrunner for many of its 20 seasons.

There's no casting news on The Council, which starts in an Arctic town where a young woman, also a renowned environmentalist, is found ritualistically murdered. A new RCMP inspector running from a derailed personal and professional life, and her partner, investigate and quickly discover the mystery extends to the dark corridors of power in Ottawa, Washington, D.C., Brussels, and then to Norway and Russia.

Eventually, the investigation returns to the Arctic, and an international conspiracy to control the world's natural resources. NBCU International, which developed The Council with Lark Productions, retains all distribution rights for the Canada-UK co-production.

The Council brings Balcer back to the Canadian Arctic where, as a college student, he worked in construction. "It's an exciting mystery and a political intrigue set against a wide canvas — climate change, indigenous extinction, competition for resources. As a story-teller, I couldn’t ask for more," Balcer said in a statement.

The executive producer credits are shared by Louise Clark and Erin Haskett for Lark and Trevor Walton and Denis Coyne for Keston International.

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