HBO Asia, Hulu Japan Set Action-Survival Series 'The Head'

'The Head' still - H 2020
Courtesy of HBO Asia

The thriller series follows a murder mystery inside a polar research station during the darkness of the Antarctic winter. It will begin airing in parts of the Asia-Pacific region, Europe and South America in June.

AT&T-owned WarnerMedia's HBO Asia has wrapped production and is readying the release of Antarctic survival thriller series The Head.

The show, produced in association with Hulu Japan and Spanish production house The Mediapro Studio, will premiere on HBO and HBO Go in the Asia-Pacific region on June 12, WarnerMedia said Thursday. The company also released the first trailer for the action series (see below).

The Head is set in the Polaris VI international polar station in Antarctica during the dark, six-month Antarctic winter. A select group of climate change scientists from different countries are in charge of keeping the base operational during the long polar nights. But suddenly the station stops communicating with the outside world — team members turn up dead and a killer is on the loose.

Helmed by Spanish director Jorge Dorado (The Pier, Mindscape), the suspense-driven story unfurls over six hourlong episodes. Dialog is in Dutch and English, reflecting the international nature of the story and cast. The polar station's scientists — and the actors who play them — hail from the U.K., Denmark, the U.S., Ireland, Japan and Spain.

The cast includes Tomohisa Yamashita (Code Blue), John Lynch (The Terror), Katharine O'Donnelly (Mary Queen of Scots), Alexandre Willaume (Below the Surface, Tomb Raider), Laura Bach (Sprinter Galore), Sandra Andreis (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo), Amelia Hoy (Killing Eve), Chris Reilly (Allied, Everest), Richard Sammel (Inglourious Basterds) and Tom Lawrence (The King, The Crown).

Aside from Asia, The Head has lined up releases in Europe and South America, although no North American broadcast has yet been set, WarnerMedia said. In Scandinavia, the show will be aired by platforms operated by Nordic Entertainment Group (NENT), and in Spain it will go out on OrangeTV. Globoplay, the Brazilian streaming service run by TV giant Globo, also has picked up the series for a release in select Latin American markets later this year.

The series was shot in a 2,000-square-meter studio in Tenerife, Spain, where the purpose-built set of the Polaris VI research station was erected. The set was built to actual scale and based on information about real layout and operation of arctic scientific facilities. The production crew also shot many of the show's exteriors in Iceland, although most of the story is set inside the polar station — giving the series the filmmakers' desired feeling of "encapsulation," WarnerMedia said.

The Head was created and written by Àlex Pastor and David Pastor, with screenwriter Isaac Sastre also collaborating on the script. Executive producers include Laura Fernandez Espeso, Javier Méndez, Ran Tellem, Bernat Elías, Mariano Baselga, Kazufumi Nagasawa, Jorge Dorado, Àlex Pastor and David Pastor.