Kim Wall's image blown up on screen during a memorial held at Columbia Journalism School. Photo: Bruce Gilbert/TT
Tobias Lindholm, the Danish screenwriter behind the project, has decided to focus the series, titled The Investigation, entirely on the victim, her friends and relatives, and the team of police investigating the crime.
The murderer, rocket-builder Peter Madsen, is to be entirely absent from the script.
“I don't want to make a crime series that is beguiled by the perpetrator or the crime,” Lindholm said in a press release announcing the project.
“I am, however, interested in the processes and the people who solved the crime, as well as the people who must go on with their lives despite it. It's therefore a fully conscious decision that the perpetrator at no time will figure in the series.”
Lindholm, and the production company Miso Productions, have secured the cooperation both of Wall's parents Ingrid and Joachim, and Jens Møller Jensen, the policeman who led the investigation.
Madsen was in April given a life sentence for the murder, the harshest sanction possible under Danish law.
Lindholm said that the cooperation of Jensen and of the Wall family had been “imperative”, and that he aimed to to work with them in a similar way to that in which he worked with professional soldiers and hostage negotiators for his acclaimed films A War and A Hijacking.
“I wish, in the same manner, to make a crime series that cuts out all the colourful stuff and depicts the reality and the facts soberly and precisely,” he said.
Wall, 30, a freelance journalist who had written for publications such as The Guardian, the New York Times, and Time Magazine, was murdered on board Madsen's home-built submarine Nautilus, after joining him for an interview on his rocket project. Madsen then dismembered her body, throwing the parts into the sea in bags weighed down by metal objects.
He initially claimed to have dropped her off on land, but soon afterwards admitted that he had thrown her body overboard.
When her torso was found, he admitted to having dismembered her, but claimed throughout the trial that she had died in an accident.
The police investigation has been widely praised. Police divers, with the aid of elite Swedish sniffer dogs, found Wall's torso, head, arms, and legs, as well as a bag of tools and a saw, deep in the water of the Öresund Straits off Copenhagen.
Danish police also managed to reconstruct Madsen's iPhone from backups, and crack the password on his computer and hard disks, revealing how his interest in snuff movies of women being tortured and decapitated had grown over the months and years leading up to the murder.
Ingrid and Joachim Wall said in the statement they were determined that their daughter's death “should not be forgotten” and that they believed that Lindholm would tackle the story “from the right perspective and with respect for all who knew and loved Kim.”
Jens Møller in the statement explained why the case had been unusual from a police perspective.
“A murder case in which you are looking for a submarine, and where you have a perpetrator before you have a body, is by its very nature spectacular,” he said.
The six-part series is being funded as a collaboration between TV2 Denmark and Sweden's TV4 & C More channels.