The series is loosely based on “Bilal”, the investigative book by the undercover journalist Fabrizio Gatti on the journey he undertook along the routes of the Sahara, populated not only by migrants who move from Africa to reach Europe but also by those they make a profit off their desperation
Very first images from the set of ‘Unwanted’, the new Sky Original series that will arrive in 2023 exclusively on Sky and streaming only on Now in all countries where Sky is present. The series is loosely based on “Bilal”, the investigative book by the undercover journalist Fabrizio Gatti on the journey he undertook along the routes of the Sahara, populated not only by migrants who move from Africa to reach Europe but also by those they make a profit off their desperation.
‘Unwanted’, in eight episodes, is produced by Sky Studios together with Pantaleon Films and Indiana Production and is created and written by Stefano Bises.
Directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel, a German director who became famous throughout the world thanks to titles such as The Downfall – The Last Days of Hitler, Diana with Naomi Watts and the winning film of the Sundance Film Festival The shadow of revenge – Five Minutes of Heaven.
The great cast of the series is very numerous and multicultural: Marco Bocci, Jessica Schwarz, Dada Fungula Bozela, Hassan Najib, Jonathan Berlin, Jason Derek Prempeh, Cecilia Dazzi, Francesco Acquaroli, Barbara Auer, Sylvester Groth, Marco Palvetti, Denise Capezza, Nuala Peberdy, Samuel Kalambay, Amadou Mbow, Edward Apeagyei, Reshny N’Kouka, Onyinye Odokoro, Massimo De Lorenzo and Scot Williams.
‘Unwanted’ tells what happens when a cruise ship, the Orizzonte, full of western tourists, rescues a group of migrants following the sinking of their boat. The stories of the cruise’s crew and passengers will intertwine with those of the ship’s new guests. The situation will precipitate when some of the migrants, having discovered that the cruise is moving towards Libya, from which they left, decide out of desperation to take the ship hostage.
Created by Stefano Bises, ‘Unwanted’ is written by Stefano Bises with the collaboration of Alessandro Valenti, Bernardo Pellegrini and Michela Straniero. The series is produced for Pantaleon by Dan Maag, Marco Beckmann, Patrick Zorer, Stephanie Schettler-Koehler and by the producer Sascha Rosemann who first had the idea of adapting Fabrizio Gatti’s book; for Indiana it is produced by Fabrizio Donvito, Benedetto Habib, Daniel Campos Pavoncelli and Marco Cohen. Executive producers for Sky Studios are Nils Hartmann and Sonia Rovai. NbcUniversal Global Distribution is the international distributor of the series on behalf of Sky Studios.
The story starts aboard the Orizzonte, a gigantic cruise ship. Five thousand passengers and crew, fifteen restaurants, a theatre, nightclubs, shops, swimming pools, a sumptuous spa. A city on the water, which sails the Mediterranean at the service of the entertainment of its European guests, who for seven days only have to eat, drink and have fun. But real life, which should have remained on land, breaks into the ship during the first night in the open sea: twenty-eight African migrants who survived the shipwreck on which they were trying to reach Italy were rescued from the sea, while more than a hundred of them did not make it. For those people fleeing hunger, war, slavery and persecution, the Horizon represents salvation and the first incredible step into the world they have dreamed of. For the passengers, the encounter with the migrants, at the very beginning of a carefree holiday, is a reality check that they probably could have done without. Because the discovery by the migrants that the ship is headed for North Africa, from where they are fleeing, disrupts the cruise and transforms the Horizon into ground zero of the global migration crisis, human trafficking and the Western world that does everything to keep the “illegals” out. Prejudices and preconceptions trap the minds of passengers, refugees and crew, just like the borders that divide the nations of the world. Here, aboard the Horizon, humanity and cruelty, tolerance and racism, hope and pain, life and, finally, death, will come to an inevitable clash…