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The masterpiece that is the first two series (streamed together) of Babylon Berlin surpassed everything that had gone before on German television. Now on the eve of Babylon Berlin’s (German) terrestrial première, ARD is announcing a third season.

It was a huge and controversial project costing more than 40 million euro, making it the most expensive German television series of all time. Also breaking new ground was the flagship - and highly risky - collaboration between ARD and Pay TV broadcaster Sky, which transmitted the sixteen episodes of the first two series from October of last year - much to the dismay of license payers. For all that, it was a massive success. Now ARD is announcing the third season.

The German broadcaster revealed that directors and writers Tom Tykwer, Henk Handloegten and Achim von Borries are currently working on the screenplay for the next series of ten episodes, which will be based on Volker Kutscher’s novel, Der stumme Tod. Filming will take place in and around Berlin, as well as in Nordrhein-Westfalen.

The first two seasons, which will be available to ARD viewers from 30th September, are set in Berlin against the backdrop of the global economic crisis. The cast includes Volker Bruch as morphine-addicted Inspector Gereon Rath, and Liv Lisa Fries as stenographer and sometime call girl Charlotte Ritter.

First two seasons sold in 90 countries

The glossy series was jointly commissioned by ARD and subscription platform Sky. The regions of Nordrhein Westfalen and Berlin-Brandenburg have already confirmed that financial support for the third will run into millions.

‘The fact that Babylon Berlin resonated on such a global scale exceeded all our expectations,’ explained co-producer Christine Strobl of ARD film subsidiary Degeto. The production was sold in more than 90 countries and has been awarded numerous prizes, including the Deutscher Fernsehpreis [German Television Award], the Grimme-Preis [Grimme Award], and most recently, the Shanghai TV Festival’s Magnolia Award.

Translated by Niall Sellar from Spiegel Online


Volker Kutscher

Volker Kutscher