The eight-part series called ‘Tatau’ follows 20-somethings Kyle Connor and Pete Griffiths who set off on a trip looking for sun, fun and new experiences.
Kyle gets himself a Maori-style tattoo in London before he leaves but is unsettled when he arrives in the Cook Islands to find locals reacting strangely to his tattoo.
While snorkelling, Kyle finds the dead body of a local girl, Aumea, tied up underwater but he returns later with the police to finds her corpse has disappeared.
Griffiths wonders if his mate is going mad but Kyle knows what he saw and starts to realise he has a gift – or a curse. The murder he’s witnessed hasn’t happened yet, it’s something that will happen in the future.
The friends become caught up in a race to prevent Aumea’s murder, as Kyle learns that prophecy isn’t his only new gift, as the full meaning of his tattoo is revealed.
‘Tatau’ will be co-produced by Touchpaper TV and South Pacific Pictures, in association with BBC America, and filming will start in September.
Filming locations have not yet been decided but a local scout has been recruited to make suggestions.
"It’s exciting to produce a show that takes the BBC audience to an entirely new location. And it’s even more exciting to explore the ancient myths of a culture that very few of us are familiar with," said Rob Pursey, Executive Producer for Touchpaper.
‘Tatau’ is the first drama series to be commissioned for BBC Three - which won Channel of the Year at the recent Broadcast Digital Awards - since BAFTA Award-winning serial ‘In the Flesh’.
Ben Stephenson, from BBC Drama, described ‘Tatau’ as “an ambitious new BBC Three drama series that will raise the bar for viewers of the channel who have a real appetite for distinctive stories from all different worlds".