Munich, February 6th 2012. The BBC secured rights to the new mobster series “Lilyhammer” starring Stevie Van Zandt. The dramedy tells the fish-out-of water-story of a New York mobster who asks to be relocated to the sleepy Norwegian town Lillehammer that hosted the 1994 Winter Olympics.

 Richard Klein, Controller BBC Four: “Lilyhammer mixes sharp wit and American big city ways with the beauty of the Norwegian mountains and folksy nature of a small town – a perfect combination for a razor-sharp drama about cultural mores. I am delighted the BBC Four has acquired this drama and I am sure our viewers are going to have a good time!” Sue Deeks, BBC’s Head of Programme Acquisition adds “Lilyhammer is fresh, funny and offbeat – it makes a highly original addition to BBC Four’s rich Scandinavian drama slate.”

“Wow, what a series! First the sale to Netflix and the outstanding ratings in Norway – scoring an all-time high for a Norwegian drama-series – and now to top it all off it will be airing on the BBC!”, says Henrik Pabst, Director of International Format Acquisition and Regional Sales Director Scandinavia, Benelux, UK. “It’s amazing how this dramedy series generated such a buzz so quickly. This demonstrates ‘Lilyhammer’s’ quality and the appeal of the show’s terrific lead Stevie Van Zandt.”

“Lilyhammer“ launched January 25th on Norway’s public broadcaster NRK1. One in five Norwegians watched the series premiere, reaching an overall share of 56.3 per cent and resulting in an all-time-high for NRK1 and the best ratings for a Norwegian made drama-series ever. With 44.2 per cent in the commercial demographics, “Lilyhammer” outperformed the channel average by 245 per cent. The second episode performed even stronger with 46,5 per cent in the commercial demographics.

Viewers in the U.S., Canada and Latin America will be able to watch the dramedy on Netflix starting February 6th. Netflix will be co-producer of the second season.

 Known for his iconic performance as Silvio Dante, the consigliere to Tony Soprano in the award-winning series “The Sopranos,” and his work as guitarist in Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, Van Zandt created “Lilyhammer” with some of Norway’s top actors, writers and directors. As Frank “The Fixer” Tagliano, Van Zandt both changes and is changed by his new Norwegian home.

“Lilyhammer“ is produced by Norwegian production company Rubicon.