Milan, March 7, 2019. Sky’s new original production PETRA, produced by Cattleya – part of ITV Studios – in association with Bartlebyfilm, has started shooting in Genoa, Italy. The project consists of four episodes inspired by the world’s most famous woman detective from Barcelona, Petra Delicado, a character created in the mid-‘90s by Alicia Giménez-Bartlett who appeared in Spain for the first time in the novel “Ritos de Muerte” (Death Rites) in 1996. The book was published in Italy by Sellerio Editore in 2002, with the title “Riti di Morte” (Death Rites) and was a great success.
Petra is a twice-divorced detective working a desk job for Genoa’s prestigious criminal investigatory squad when she is suddenly thrust into the frontlines, charged with solving violent crimes and murders. Her newly assigned partner is Antonio Monte – an old-fashioned policeman close to retirement, with years of experience, wisdom and insight.
Petra will be played by Paola Cortellesi (Like a cat on a highway, Escort in love, Do you see me?) and the series will be directed by Maria Sole Tognazzi (A five star life, Me, myself and her, Past perfect). The pair are working together again after Past perfect, the first film that Ms. Tognazzi directed, which earned her an Italian Globo D’oro award for Best Directorial Debut and an Italian Nastro d’Argento award for Best Emerging Director. This is her first television production.
Petra’s partner, detective Antonio Monte, will be played by Andrea Pennacchi.
Paola Cortellesi said: «Petra is a highly skilled yet imperfect woman, who has the courage to free herself from female clichés, first and foremost the need to please others. She is looking for a way out and is not afraid of the consequences. I love the character that Alicia Giménez-Bartlett has created, and I’m delighted to be able to play her under the direction of Maria Sole Tognazzi, who is an outstanding filmmaker and a dear friend».
Maria Sole Tognazzi said: «In my films I have always wanted to represent unconventional, free and surprising women who challenge traditional perceptions, and Petra is a perfect opportunity to be part of a great project that focuses on those themes. I’m extremely proud to be given the opportunity to bring Alicia Giménez-Bartlett’s wonderful creation to television. Petra is an iconic character, and I think the public will fall in love with her».
Nicola Maccanico, Executive Vice President Programming at Sky Italia, commented: «The quality and strength of our original productions continues to grow, and we are thrilled to welcome Paola Cortellesi to the Sky family. Paola is an amazing, beloved and accomplished actress, and her involvement is yet another example of our ambition to become the home of Italy’s finest talent. Petra is an important project, which we were able to develop in collaboration with our long-standing partner Cattleya. With an international best-selling novel as the source material, we’re confident this TV adaptation will captivate subscribers as it brings to life an ingenious and complex female character. This is not a traditional detective story thanks to Maria Sole Tognazzi’s unique directing style, her portrayal of women is always authentic and refreshingly free of stereotypes. Sky viewers will soon be able to immerse themselves in Petra’s world, and they will not be disappointed».
Riccardo Tozzi, Founder and Co-CEO of Cattleya, commented: «We have always seen Petra as a story perfectly fitting Cattleya’s DNA since it revolves around a strong and totally unconventional woman and because it allows us to continue exploring different genres, breaking new ground with our first ever detective story. Having a novel as our starting point is also one of our long-standing hallmarks, and we are thrilled to produce this work and excited to make it with a partner like Sky, a director like Maria Sole Tognazzi and with Paola Cortellesi as the protagonist. Last but not least, collaborating with a talented writer and an extraordinary woman like Alicia Giménez-Bartlett is a wonderful experience».
The series is written by Giulia Calenda, Furio Andreotti and Ilaria Macchia, and Enrico Audenino wrote one of the four scripts. Shooting is currently taking place in Genoa – with the support of the Genoa-Liguria Film Commission – and then the production will move to Rome.
Petra will soon be aired exclusively on Sky.