“Hohlbeins – Der Greif”: Hohlbein classics for streaming

“Hohlbeins – The Griffin”
Hohlbein classics to stream

Becky (Lea Drinda), Mark (Jeremias Meyer) and Memo (Zoran Pingel) in "Hohlbeins - The Griffin".

Becky (Lea Drinda), Mark (Jeremias Meyer) and Memo (Zoran Pingel) in “Hohlbeins – Der Greif”.

© Gordon Timpen/Amazon Prime Video/W&B Television

Wolfgang Hohlbein goes into series production: the implementation of his fantasy classic “Der Greif” can now be seen on Amazon Prime Video.

Wolfgang Hohlbein (69) is one of the best-known contemporary authors in Germany. Millions of novels sold have made it one of the top German-language addresses for fantastic worlds for decades. Fantasy and science fiction stories are just as familiar to Hohlbein readers as adventures from the Middle Ages or horror. With “Hohlbeins – Der Greif” the implementation of one of his classics in series form will be released on May 26th on Amazon Prime Video.

Just save the world

The series is based on the novel of the same name, Der Greif, which Hohlbein wrote with his wife Heike. The production takes viewers back to the mid-1990s – to fictional Krefelden.

“The 100,000 Mark Show” with moderator Ulla Kock am Brink (61) runs in the boob tube, and pirated copies on floppy disks and recorded music cassettes circulate in the schoolyard. The focus of the six episodes is not a realistic coming-of-age story of German teenagers. Instead, Mark (Jeremias Meyer, 23), Becky (Lea Drinda, born 2001) and Memo (Zoran Pingel, 24) go to a fantastic world – to the “Black Tower”.

Apparently only Mark can defeat the griffin, a terrible monster. He doesn’t really want to have anything to do with any of this, but when his brother Thomas (Theo Trebs, 28) disappears, he and his friends set out to fight the monster.

Who is playing?

In addition to Meyer, Drinda, Pingel and Trebs, there are also a few big names from the German acting world: Armin Rohde (68), Golo Euler (40) and Fabian Busch (47). Other performers include Flora Li Thiemann, Sabine Timoteo, Thorsten Merten, Yuri Völsch and Samirah Breuer.

Not only because the whole thing is based on Hohlbein’s work, the expectations of some German fantasy lovers should be quite high. The “Der Greif” series is “probably the most ambitious German fantasy project since ‘The Neverending Story'”, as Philip Pratt, Head of German Originals at Amazon Studios, said in a press release at the end of 2021 as part of the start of shooting.

Sebastian Marka (director) and Erol Yesilkaya (screenplay) are responsible as showrunners and conceived the series. One or the other viewer might know the two from the “crime scene”. For the “Meta” case, the book-director duo received a Grimme Prize in 2019.

For Marka, a dream has come true with the new series. “I was eleven years old when I read the novel ‘Der Greif’ for the first time,” he is also quoted in the statement. “I immediately had a flood of images in my head and from then on I wanted to go into film, to work as a director and at some point to film this exact story. […] I’m very happy to finally be able to make this childhood dream come true.”


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