ZDF is phasing out the two crime series "SOKO Hamburg" and "Letzte Spur Berlin" in order to invest more money in programs aimed at a younger audience. The last season will be commissioned this year, the broadcaster announced on Friday. "The episodes will then be broadcast in the usual slots in 2024 and form the conclusion of the two crime formats."
The measure is part of a larger plan. "In the course of sustainable program development, ZDF will invest more in offers for younger target groups," explained ZDF program director Nadine Bilke in Mainz. "Unfortunately, this strategic shift also means that we have to part with successful and beloved programs. We have therefore decided to end the crime series "SOKO Hamburg" and "Letzte Spur Berlin" in favor of developing new formats. Farewell to two Such successful formats are not easy for us."
ZDF wants to rejuvenate its program and average audience. One wants to "address younger target groups and reach people who have so far used the ZDF program little or not at all". For this purpose, 100 million euros are to be redistributed from the program by 2024.
"SOKO Hamburg" has been running in the 6 p.m. slot on ZDF since 2018, which it shares with the SOKO series from Potsdam. The sixth season with 13 episodes will be produced in 2023. The 13th season of "Letzte Spur Berlin" with twelve episodes will be filmed this year. Since 2012, the thriller has been added to "SOKO Leipzig" on Fridays at 9:15 p.m.
The production company Network Movie reacted to the broadcaster's decision with great regret. We found out about it on Friday. "The excellent ratings and the high sympathy values that "SOKO Hamburg" has achieved show that our thrillers have always been up to date," says a statement. "It was particularly important to us to live the "SOKO Hamburg" as a creative forge for the next generation of the industry. Quite a few of the creative people have successfully used the format as a start to their careers."