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nbc NBC's 'Crossing Lines' to make history

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This Sunday night, NBC debuts a new mid-summer crime series titled 'Crossing Lines.' While the series features some familiar faces, such as Donald Sutherland and William Fichtner, it will break new ground when it airs, as it becomes the first European-made series to be broadcast on a major U.S. network. Not only that, but the series takes place entirely in Europe, mainly in Paris and Prague. 
There are European programs that you can find on American networks, such as PBS, BBC America or even Netflix, but this will be the first test in seeing if a large-scale American audience will tune in to see a foreign story told. If it succeeds, will the door open to more? It certainly seems that way.
?The audience is changing, the world is getting smaller and its more open to global issues, you can see that with feature films which are increasingly being set all over the world, not just in America,?  said Rola Bauer, a 'Crossing Lines' executive producer.  ?Network executives are trying different things, trying to give their audiences a full palate. There's the sports, the reality shows, the domestic stories but also something else, something that might have a familiar concept and recognizable talent but is also different, more exotic.?
The show is unique in that it features a combination of the American and European business models. Its budget is huge - $3 million per episode (huge by European standards), which came from European networks, pre-sales and tax breaks.
Ten episodes were ordered for the first season - a number uncommon in both markets, as American shows generally do between 22-24 episodes, while European programs often broadcast between six and eight. An international cast appears on the show and it is filmed on location all across Europe.
?It really is international, both in front and behind the camera you have people from Italy, Germany, France, the States, Canada, Ireland, England,? said Irish actor Richard Flood, a cast member. ?It adds an interesting dynamic because all those cultures are really quite different and seeing them come together adds a certain spark.?
Even if the show does poorly on NBC, it will continue on in Europe.
'Crossing Lines' airs Sunday night at 9 p.m.


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