“Tatort: Mercy. Too Late” (September 10th, 8:15 p.m., the first) is probably the darkest episode of the cult crime series to date. It is only after almost 80 minutes that dawn illuminates the scene. A challenge for the audience, but also for the cast and crew during filming.
"Of course, that brings with it challenges," confirms Bastian Günther (49) to Hessischer Rundfunk. "The large lighting units and lighting modifications were a big factor, especially in the context of the remote location - field, edge of forest, unpaved ground - which didn't make the work any easier," adds the director and screenwriter.
"At some point, in the third week of night shooting, you notice a collective fatigue in the team. At some point you start to slow down," he admits. But the graduate of the German Film and Television Academy in Berlin was also able to see something positive about the circumstances: "But the nice thing is that there is a great deal of concentration and focus at night. You are all alone in these fields and you are completely focused, man It's like being in a bubble." But it suddenly became difficult “to adjust to the daytime again. It was suddenly so bright,” he remembers.
The unusual film language means it fits perfectly with the content, because it's about unreported cases and shady people. The inspiration for this story was “real life,” says Bastian Günther.
Specifically, he mentions "the events surrounding Police Station 1 in Frankfurt and the NSU 2.0 threatening letters" - that is still disturbing. "Even if a guilty party - not a police officer - has ultimately been arrested and convicted, many unanswered questions remain," he says. “The case surrounding the threatening letters is just a case in which the police are connected to right-wing actions,” he explains.
“Even among Reich citizens or prepper groups there are always police officers or Bundeswehr soldiers,” adds Günther. And isolated cases are mentioned again and again. "I don't want to lump all police officers together; most of them are certainly good people. But how many individual cases are a network?" asks the director.