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New Nordic drama Trapped is one of those series that makes you long for, say, a tropical island, where ice is found in exotic cocktails and blizzards don’t occur. Ever.

Trapped: Ólafur Darri Ólafsson as Andri. © RVK Studios

For viewers who’ve watched Fortitude, you know that the residents of that Arctic town had it bad with multiple murders and the horror that got unleashed from melting permafrost.

What you don’t know yet is that, in Trapped (Ófærð), the denizens of Seyðisfjörður, a small town on the edge of Iceland, also have murder and mystery on their hands. And more besides.

The gorged and mutilated torso and dismembered limbs of an unidentified man are found in the fjord shortly after an international ferry arrives in port. Then a powerful blizzard blows in, ice in the fjord paralyzes the ferry, and both situations leave the townspeople closed off and without help from the rest of the world. There is no way in, no way out. They are trapped.

Based on an idea from Icelandic filmmaker Baltasar Kormákur (Jar City, 2 Guns), Trapped is the most expensive television series ever produced in Iceland, with a cost of nearly 1 billion ISK (Icelandic króna), or roughly £5 million or $7.6 million based on today’s currency exchange rate. According to Iceland’s DV newspaper, series typically cost between 100 and 200 million ISK.

Said Sue Deeks, BBC Head of Programme Acquisition, “A truly gripping storyline, stunning Icelandic setting and renowned feature film director Baltasar Kormákur (Everest) was a combination impossible to resist. Trapped will be our first Icelandic drama series and I am certain that BBC Four viewers are in for an absolute treat!”

Trapped stars Ólafur Darri Ólafsson (The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, True Detective) in the lead role of Andri, and is joined by Ilmur Kristjánsdóttir (Virgin Mountain, Spooks and Spirits), Nína Dögg Filippusdóttir (Undercurrent, Country Wedding), and Bjarne Henriksen (Borgen, The Killing), amongst other Icelandic actors.

Kormákur is producing and directing Trapped. Magnús Viðar Sigurðsson (Mr. Bjarnfreðarson) also has producing duties, and Baldvin Zophoníasson (Life In A Fishbowl), Óskar Thór Axelsson (Black’s Game), and Börkur Sigþórsson (Come To Harm) have directing duties, too.

The writers are Clive Bradley (City of Vice), Sigurjón Kjartansson (Ástríður), Ólafur Egilsson (Afinn), and Jóhann Ævar Grímsson (The Night Shift), and distributor Dynamic Television’s Dan March and Klaus Zimmermann serve as executive producers.

Filming ends this week on Trapped, an RVK Studios production for Iceland’s national public service broadcaster RUV, where the 10-part series is scheduled to premiere this winter.

BBC Four has not yet announced its debut date for Trapped, so stay tuned. Ditto for if and when a US programmer picks up the series.


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Watch: Trailer for Trapped, New Icelandic Drama Acquired by BBC Four
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