As the New Year starts to approach and Doctor Who fans look forward to events surrounding the fiftieth anniversary of the show in 2013, let’s take a minute to look forward to what former Doctor David Tennant will be offering us in January with his new drama Spies of Warsaw.
The BBC has confirmed that this will air sometime between the fifth and eleventh of January although a definite date has yet to be announced.
Starring David Tennant as Jean-Francois Mercier and also featuring Burn Gorman (Torchwood, The Dark Knight Rises) this two part spry story is set in London and parts of Europe and takes place during the years in the build up to the Second World War. Spies of Warsaw is directed by Coky Giedroyc who has also been the helmer of BBC miniseries Blackpool, which starred David Tennant and David Morrissey, as well as the pilot episode of Sherlock by Steven Moffat. (Although the pilot episode was reshot by another director, you can still watch Giedroyc’s original version on the Sherlock series one DVD and Blu-ray). Spies of Warsaw’s first episode was given an outline recently in a press release:
It is 1937, and Colonel Jean-Francois Mercier, a highly decorated soldier from the First World War, is the military attaché stationed in Warsaw, Poland while the shadow of Hitler’s Nazi regime looms over mainland Europe.
Mercier is grossly suspicious of the German military’s intentions, but he must juggle his formal duties at stifling diplomatic functions with the often death-defying realities of espionage.
With intelligence from his German informant Edvard Uhl, Mercier sets out on a stealth mission with his trusted accomplice Marek, where they discover that the Nazis are ensuring any future invasion of Poland can take place effectively and with little resistance. Mercier almost gets caught and killed during the mission, narrowly escaping, and thereby facing the wrath of French bureaucrat Jourdain, who is anxious to avoid the further heightening of diplomatic tension.
Amid the threat of a second world war, Mercier is also vying for the affections of Parisian lawyer Anna Skarbek, currently in an empty-shell relationship with Russian Émigré and political journalist Maxim. As Mercier and Anna’s relationship develops, it is clear that she must choose between both men. But will Mercier’s feelings for Anna jeopardise his mission and can she be trusted?
Based on Alan Furst’s acclaimed novel, Spies of Warsaw will be broadcast on BBC Four in January 2013 as two ninety minute film adaptations. You can see the trailer below.