Nordic Noir

Swedish hero to lead new The Bridge season

Swedish hero to lead new The Bridge season
The Bridge characters Saga Noren and Martin Rodhe. Photo: Ola Torkelsson/TT
UPDATED: Five weeks before series three of The Bridge gets under way, its writer insists the show "works just fine" without its former main character, Danish policeman Martin Rodhe, as his Swedish counterpart Saga Norén moves into focus.

The long awaited third instalment of The Bridge hits Swedish television screens on September 27th, but it will be missing one half of the Danish-Swedish cop duo that has been the focus Scandinavia's biggest crime show since it launched in 2011.

Copenhagen-born actor Kim Bodnia quit the programme after the second season because he did not like the way his character Martin Rodhe developed. But Sofia Helin, who plays Saga Norén, the unusual autistic Swedish investigator assigned to work alongside him, will return.

The programme previously focused on the duo solving crimes linked to the Öresund bridge, which connects the Danish capital with Malmö in southern Sweden. The two police officers were seen developing a close relationship despite having very different personalities and their interactions formed a huge part of the show.

“When Kim told us he didn’t want to do it any more, it was clear that there was a black hole,” writer Hans Rosenfeldt told Swedish broadcaster SVT this week.

But he insisted that the show would continue to entertain viewers by looking at cultural differences between Danes and Swedes.

“We provide other Danes around Saga, which works just fine, and actually allows us to explore other sides of her,” he said.

However he said that the show’s atmosphere would shift following the exit of the warm-hearted Martin Rodhe and his sometimes sloppy approach to both policing and relationships.

“It will become something completely different this time. This is very much Saga's season, earlier the focus was much more on Martin and his private life.”

The Bridge, which is jointly funded by Danish television network DR as well as SVT became a cult hit across Scandinavia four years ago and also has a strong following in the UK and Germany.

Fans have raised concerns on social media that the third season will not be able to live up to their expectations, due to the departure of Rodhe.

However, a trailer instead gives viewers a glimpse of Danish actor Thure Lindhardt (0:44 mark), known for roles in Danish films like Steppeulvene and Nordkraft as well as appearances in international hits like the Fast and Furious franchise.

Lindhardt will play a character named Henrik and press promos for the third season feature him posing alongside Helin, but Danish broadcaster DR is tight-lipped about just who will fill Bodina’s role as the main Danish character.

Actor Nicolas Bro, known from plenty of Danish television productions, will also join the cast.