StarringHeiner Lauterbach[1]
Country of originGermany
No. of seasons6
No. of episodes70
Running time60 minutes
Original release
Release6 November 1988 (1988-11-06) –
1993 (1993)

Eurocops is a European television crime TV-series produced between 1988 and 1992. It is a co-production between seven European TV stations in which each station produced a number of episodes which were then pooled, dubbed and otherwise adapted when needed and broadcast by all participating stations, a format used earlier in the German crime series Tatort.[2] The participating networks were ZDF from Germany, ORF from Austria, SRG from Switzerland, RAI from Italy, Televisión Española from Spain, Antenne 2 from France and Channel 4 from the United Kingdom.[3]

A direct consequence of the 'pooled production' format was that all episodes by one particular network had a strong local or national feel and were distinctly different from the episodes produced by other networks. Not only were they filmed in the network's own country with local actors, but they were also written by local screenwriters, thus reflecting that nation's specific taste for crime dramas. With national networks at that time still relying on self-produced programs, a big part of Eurocops' allure was that it offered viewers in one country a first-hand look at what crime series in other countries looked like.[4]

Despite being a pan-European TV series, the three German speaking networks did more than half of the filming with Germany and Austria filming 15 episodes on their own and one more joint production. Switzerland contributed another 12. Of the four non-German speaking countries, Italy made 13 episodes and France made 8, whereas Spain and the UK made only 4 and 3 episodes respectively.

All in all, in a span of five and a half years, seventy-one episodes were produced. Typically they were broadcast once a month. In Germany, ZDF broadcast the series on every fourth Friday as part of its Friday night crime lineup. (The three other Fridays it would broadcast episodes from other homemade crime series). Its first broadcast was on November 6, 1988 with a Swiss production called "Tote reisen nicht" (English: The dead don't travel).

Introduction and title music

A little sensation for its time was the title sequence. Not only was the title music a haunting electronic theme composed by Jan Hammer (Playing Piano's, Synthesizers & Gretch Drums), it was accompanied by a wild camera ride in which a camera circles over a map of Europe, shows the different cities in which the episodes play and for each city shows a picture of the local detective with his name and title. Finally the camera zooms out into a picture of the police badge of the country in which the episode in question plays. Still a novelty for this time, the title was completely computer generated.

Cast and crew







United Kingdom

See also


  1. ^ "Heiner Lauterbach". (in German). 22 January 2024.
  2. ^ Last, Richard (November 8, 1988). "Extending the long arm of the law". The Daily Telegraph. p. 20. Retrieved 2 March 2024.
  3. ^ "Eurocops: Night Pay". The Perthshire Advertiser. January 29, 1991. p. 23. Retrieved 2 March 2024.
  4. ^ "Unhappy beat of a Eurocop". The Liverpool Echo. March 5, 1990. p. 17. Retrieved 2 March 2024.

Further reading