David Hasselhoff is going meta in Ze Network, a new German TV series in which he will star as Hollywood actor David Hasselhoff.
The plot of the dark comedy sees the Hoff cast in a theater play in Germany only to be caught up in an international conspiracy of former Cold War assassins.
Ze Network will be the first project under CBS Studios’ new first-look international TV agreement with Berlin production company Syrreal Entertainment. Ze Network will premiere on TV Now, the German subscription video on demand platform run by RTL Group.
RTL has a long history with Hasselhoff. His 1980s action series Knight Rider was a huge hit for the network and became an iconic show in Germany. Hasselhoff later capitalized on that success to launch an unlikely pop music career in Germany-speaking Europe. After the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989, Hasselhoff’s song “Looking for Freedom,” based on an old German hit parade tune, became an anthem for the newly reunited country.
Syrreal, headed by Christian Alvart and Sigi Kamml are best known internationally for their German crime series Dogs of Berlin on Netflix.
German actor Henry Hübchen (Go for Zucker!) will co-star in Ze Network as a version of himself — a famous Eastern German actor who might also be an international spy. Alvart is also directing the series. Kamml, Alvart, and Timm Oberwelland will produce. Shooting is set to begin in July.
The first-look deal between Syrreal and CBS Studios will focus on sourcing, acquiring, and developing premium scripted content out of Germany for the international market. Ze Network is one of several international projects in the works at CBS Studios, which is following the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime in marking local-language series as a means to drive growth outside the U.S..
“Knight Rider was incredibly successful for both me and RTL. Returning now 30 years later to do a cutting-edge series and working with RTL again is a dream come true,” Hasselfhoff said in a statement. “The series is funny, deadly, creative, and informative … simply exciting. Fact or fiction, you decide.”
Added Alvart: “I can’t wait to share with audiences the crazy ride Mr. Hasselhoff will be bravely taking on with Ze Germans.”