Henning Mankell to write Bergman TV drama

Swedish crime writer to pen mini-series for SVT

COLOGNE, Germany -- Swedish public broadcaster STV is bringing together two of Sweden's most successful cultural exports -- film director Ingmar Bergman and best-selling crime author Henning Mankell. Mankell has signed on to write a four-hour mini-series based on Bergman's life, to be shown on SVT in 2012.

Mankell is best known for his Inspector Kurt Wallander novels, which have been adapted into successful series by SVT and, more recently, by the BBC in a BAFTA-award winning procedural starring Kenneth Branagh.

Mankell's script for the Bergman series will cover a wide swath of the director's life and not shy away from the darker sides of his character.

"What interests me is what one might call the 'price of obsession'," Mankell said in a statement. "What fascinates me is the price Bergman had to pay for his uncompromising creativity -- it darkened many aspects of the rest of his life."

Widely recognized as one of the greatest directors of all time, Bergman created some of cinema's most iconic works, including "The Seventh Seal" (1957), "Cries and Whispers" (1972), "Scenes from a Marriage" (1973) and "Fanny and Alexander" (1982).