HBO Europe Doubles Down on Polish Drama With Crime Series From 'The Border' Writer

Wahata 2 - Still - H - 2016
HBO Europe

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, who is confronted with the case of her life after the body of a young, unidentified woman is 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