Netflix announced today that it will release the second season of the Turkish fantasy series The Gift on Sept. 10. The show made its United States debut exclusively on the streaming service on Dec. 27, 2019, and is made by the same team responsible for The Protector, which is one of Netflix’s most popular international shows.
Based on Şengül Boybaş’ novel Dünyanın Uyanışı, the show follows Atiye (Beren Saat), a painter living and working in Istanbul who seems to have the perfect life. She’s young, beautiful, wealthy, and happy with a loving family and devoted boyfriend. Her career is also about to take off thanks to her first solo expedition.
That changes with the archaeologist Ehran (Mehmet Günsür) discovers a symbol in Göbekli Tepe, a Turkish archeological site believed to be the world’s oldest temple. The image is mysteriously connected to Atiye and sets her on a quest to understand its meaning and her own past.
The symbol plays a prominent role in the brief teaser trailer, appearing almost akin to a crop circle. There’s plenty of compelling mystery hinted at in the plot, which based on a real-world site that’s only been 5% excavated and is subject to plenty of scholarly debate. It’s a concept that might play out in ancient Egypt or Rome in a Western-made work and shows the power of international entertainment to freshen things up through new perspectives and settings.
Netflix was an early importer of international series with an emphasis on genre titles like the German time travel mystery Dark and the Colombian fantasy rom-com Always a Witch. That investment is likely to produce even bigger dividends as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to create problems for filming new content around the world. Hollywood shows and movies may be delayed, but Netflix will have a reservoir of new to American audiences titles to keep subscribers happy.
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