USA Network has given a 10-episode, straight-to-series order to Eyewitness, an adaptation of the Norwegian crime thriller Øyevitne. The project comes from Shades Of Blue creator Adi Hasak, who wrote it and will serve as executive producer/showrunner. The original series’ creator Jarl Emsell Larsen also will executive produce.
The series, in the popular Nordic noir genre, explores a grisly crime from the point of view of the eyewitnesses. It is produced by Universal Cable Prods. and is part of the studio’s broader initiative to jump-start a greater volume of high-end series at a lower license fee to its sister nets through a model that involves UCP supplementing the budget for the shows through financing via collaborations with international networks and SVOD deals. Other projects under that initiative include the Syfy straight-to-series drama series Hunters, from Gale Anne Hurd and Natalie Chaidez, and the USA two-hour supernatural pilot The Wilding from Tim Kring.
In Eyewitness, two innocent teenage boys secretly meet up in the forest where they bear witness to a shooting and barely escape with their lives. Desperate to keep their relationship a secret and in fear of being found by the perpetrator, they remain silent but soon learn that what has been seen cannot be unseen and when you witness a horrible event it changes everything, forever.
“Norway’s incredible show Eyewitness is a bone-chilling thrill ride that not only exposes the details of a crime but also the secrets of the witnesses who watched,” said Dawn Olmstead, EVPDevelopment at Universal Cable Productions. When Adi brought this to UCP, we immediately knew we had to be involved.”
The original series was produced in Norway by NRK Drama and premiered last year. Anneke von der Lippe won a best actress International Emmy for her role as the police investigator on the show. Here is a trailer: