The Serpent: Tahar Rahim stars as conman Charles Sobhraj in hippie trail thriller
Netflix just released a trailer for its eight-part limited series The Serpent starring recent Golden Globe nominee Tahar Rahim (of The Mauritanian fame). Based on real events, The Serpent tells the story of notorious serial conman Charles Sobhraj (Rahim) who goes out on a spree of crimes on the ‘Hippie Trail' of South Asia posing as a gem dealer, along with his girlfriend, Marie-Andrée Leclerc (Doctor Who star Jenna Coleman), across Thailand, Nepal and India in 1975 and 1976, that also led them to become the chief suspects in a series of murders of young travelers.
Herman Knippenberg (Billy Howle), a junior diplomat at the Dutch Embassy in Bangkok, unknowingly walks into this murky web of Sobhraj's deceit and with the help of his wife Angela (Ellie Bamber) and global police forces, sets off a chain of events that will eventually see Sobhraj become Interpol’s most wanted man across several continents, and eventually captured in 1976, months after his killing spree began.
"I was like, Man, if I meet this guy, he’s never going to get me. I’m too careful! But serial killers, they pick their prey. They observe. Charles would pick young backpackers, and he would try to sell them paradise, and then [gemstone] rocks, so they can sell it back in their countries and make money. When they wouldn’t accept, they were in trouble, because he was playing God. He was playing God a lot," Rahim told an entertainment portal about the character.
A co-production between BBC One and Netflix, The Serpent is set to debut on Netflix on April 2. Richard Warlow and Toby Finlay are writers on the series, and the show has been directed by Tom Shankland and Hans Herbots, and executive produced by Richard Warlow, Tom Shankland, Preethi Mavahalli and Damien Timmer for Mammoth Screen.