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BBC Acquires French Crime Thriller “Sambre – Anatomy of a Crime

BBC Acquires French Crime Thriller "Sambre – Anatomy of a Crime

The BBC has acquired the French crime thriller “Sambre – Anatomy of a Crime,” a six-part series that delves into the true story of one of France’s most notorious sexual predators.

Set along the Sambre river in northern France, the series chronicles a string of sexual assaults in the late 1980s and the prolonged investigation that spanned three decades before the perpetrator was finally apprehended.

Directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Jean-Xavier de Lestrade, known for “The Staircase” and “Laetitia,” the series meticulously recounts the legal case of the serial rapist. The cast features notable actors including Alix Poisson (“The Returned,” “Six Women”), Clémence Poésy (“The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon,” “Tenet”), Olivier Gourmet (“Oussekine,” “La Promesse”), Noémie Lvovsky (“Camille Rewinds,” “Farewell, My Queen”), Jonathan Turnbull (“Soldiers”), and Pauline Parigot (“Soldiers,” “HPI”).

“Sambre – Anatomy of a Crime” follows the investigation’s progression and its societal impacts from the 1980s through 2018, coinciding with the rise of France’s #MeToo movement.

The narrative structure of the series offers unique perspectives by dedicating each episode to a different character involved in the case: a victim, the judge, the mayor, the scientist, the police officer, and ultimately, the perpetrator.

This approach provides a gripping examination of the societal and institutional failures that allowed the predator to evade capture for so long.

Sue Deeks, Head of BBC Programme Acquisition, praised the series, stating, “’Sambre – Anatomy of a Crime’ is an absorbing series about France’s most notorious sexual predator, and of how he was allowed to slip through the cracks of the judicial system for over 30 years.

Each episode is told from the perspective of a different character involved in the case and is a gripping examination of the flaws of a society and its institutions.”

Produced by What’s Up Films and Federation Studios in co-production with Versus Production, “Sambre – Anatomy of a Crime” was originally commissioned by France Televisions and will be available for streaming on BBC iPlayer.


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