Danish director Mikkel Nørgaard will direct the first part of the franchise, The Woman In The Cage.

Danish production outfit Zentropa Entertainments and commercial broadcaster TV2 have purchased film and TV rights to Danish author Jussi Adler-Olsen’s best selling novels about Detective inspector Carl Mørck of Department Q.

Danish director Mikkel Nørgaard, whose last credit was Clown (Klovn: The Movie) will direct the first part of the franchise, The Woman in the Cage, aka Mercy (Kvinden i buret), scheduled to shoot from next September. Danish writer-director Nikolaj Arcel, whose next feature, A Royal Affair (En kongelig Affære) will be released next year, will script the whole series.

The Woman in the Cage will be launched domestically during Christmas 2013, followed by a new installment every year till 2016.

Adler-Olsen has written four novels about Mørck’s investigations, including The Pheasant Killers (Fasandræberne/), Message in a Bottle (Flaskepost fra) and Journal 64, which have sold a total of six million copies in 32 countries - 1.3 million in Denmark.

”For some time we have been looking for a high-quality crime series with a big audience potential, and I am sure the teaming of Adler-Olsen and Zentropa will deliver it,” said TV2 programme director Keld Reinicke about the station’s so far largest contract with a private production company.

”Both Adler-Olsen and Department Q are favourites of mine,” added Zentropa head Peter Aalbæk Jensen.