The wildly popular youth series ‘Skam’ (‘Shame’) has been sold to the US and an American version will go into production already in 2017, broadcaster NRK reported.
The programme, which follows the lives of teenagers in Oslo, is Norway’s biggest online hit ever with around 200,000 viewers for each episode.
It has also been such a massive hit in the other Nordic countries that it was recently given the Norden Association’s annual language prize for popularizing Norwegian in neighbouring countries.
There has also been a global clamouring for the programme to air with English subtitles, a gap that’s been filled by Norwegian fans taking it upon themselves to provide translations on unofficial YouTube rips of the series.
The show has also received praise for its modern delivery method. ‘Skam’ clips are published online every day and then put together into a full episode that airs every Friday both online and on the youth-oriented channel NRK3.
The US rights for the show were purchased by producer Simon Fuller’s XIX Entertainment production company. Fuller is behind international successes like the ‘Idol’ franchise, ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ and the pop group Spice Girls.
“‘Skam’ has the potential to be a very influential series in North American where we don’t have anything like it. It shows that Norway and Scandinavia are at the forefront of innovation and creativity and I am proud to be part of making ‘Skam’ available to a much bigger audience than it is today,” Fuller told NRK.
Haakon Moslet, NRK’s head of youth programming, told The Guardian that Fuller’s version would be a full remake meant to appeal to the American market.
Norwegians who may feel queasy about what an Americanized version of ‘Skam’ might look like could take solace in another bit of news announced on Friday.
A fourth season of ‘Skam’ will be coming in the spring, NRK said.
You can catch up on the series here (if you understand Norwegian, that is).