SundanceTV has just announced that it has teamed up with FremantleMedia International to co-produce Deutschland 83, an 8-part German-language coming-of-age story set in 1980s Germany. Once released, it will become the first original German-language drama produced and broadcast by a major U.S. network.
Jorg Winger, who co-created the series with his American-born wife, Anna Winger, draws from many of his own experiences of living in Germany during the height of the Cold War to tell a story of the culture wars and political events of Germany in 1983.
The story follows 24-year-old Martin Rauch (Jonas Nay) as he is pulled away from his East German life and sent to West Germany as a spy for the Stasi foreign service. Hiding in plain sight by serving in the West German army, he must gather intelligence on NATO military strategies, but quickly discovers that nothing is quite what it seems and everyone he encounters is harboring secrets, both political and personal.
Anna and Joerg Winger commented on the news, saying, “Deutschland 83 was born of a transatlantic relationship. Conceived at our German-American kitchen table in Berlin, written by an American with an international team, made in Germany with a diverse and remarkably talented cast and crew. We are thrilled to be the first German series on TV in the United States and honored to follow in the footsteps of the other great series on SundanceTV.”
A special screening of the first two episodes took place during the 65th Berlinale International Film Festival on Monday. Deutschland 83 is set to make its full TV debut in Germany later this year with the U.S. SundanceTV date yet to be announced.