Aficionados of The Killing and The Returned are already au fait with subtitled dramas on primetime TV. Now comes the next challenge: bilingual dramas.
The Tunnel, which starts on Sky Atlantic this month, is the first dual language production for UK television. The Franco-English show is a remake of The Bridge, transposing the murder mystery from the bridge which links Sweden and Denmark to the Channel Tunnel.
Stephen Dillane and Clémence Poésy play the British and French detectives, Karl and Elise, and, to judge from a preview screening, much is being made of traditional cross-channel rivalries. Poésy greets the British police with a muttered “Voila les rosbifs”, while Dillane’s first words to his French counterpart are, “Steady on Joan, I’m not looking for a war here.”
Both actors should count themselves lucky that they are not in Hinterland. Pitched as the Welsh Wallander, the BBC4/BBC Wales co-production is the first drama to be shot twice – once in English, once in Welsh – for viewers on either side of the border. Vive la différence!
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