Studio Hamburg FilmProduktion has optioned television rights for Leena Lehtolainen’s Maria Kallio novel series

The German production company Studio Hamburg FilmProduktion has optioned the television rights for Leena Lehtolainen’s Maria Kallio series. Now development starts and according to a preliminary schedule, Studio Hamburg hopes to start shooting in Winter 2014, with the plan being to air the series in both Germany and Finland.

Kerstin Ramcke, producer:” We are very proud to have the opportunity to work with the excellent stories of Leena Lehtolainen. Maria Kallio is a thrilling and modern personality and will give an interesting impulse to our audience who already loves the novels. So we start this journey together with Hannu Salonen, writer and director, in order to produce a high class crime series.”

”Leena Lehtolainen has a very strong foothold in Germany, where the publishing company Rowohlt has published all the novels in the Maria Kallio series. The television series will increase the popularity of the Maria Kallio novels in Germany and Finland,” says Elina Ahlbäck, Lehtolainen’s literary agent at Elina Ahlbäck Literary Agency with excitement.

With her books generating great interest worldwide, Leena Lehtolainen has received numerous invitations to promotional events in different countries. The author has just returned from The Shanghai Literary Festival and Beijing Literary Festival, where she promoted Finnish crime literature in general and presented Maria Kallio series to the Chinese readers.

”I’m very pleased that readers round the world find my novels interesting. Germany has been an important country for me for a long time and German readers are close to my heart. It is fantastic that Maria Kallio’s adventures will soon be seen on television there as well,” explains Lehtolainen.

The beginning of the Maria Kallio series dates back to 1993 when the first installment My First Murder (Ensimmäinen murhani) was published by Tammi Publishers. For the last 20 years, Lehtolainen’s crime novels have featured among the most popular books in Finland. In March 2013, The Maria Kallio Companion (Maria Kallio –Extra) was published to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the crime series, giving the reader an insight into the world of Maria Kallio, to her career path and numerous other topics related to the novels. The 12th Maria Kallio thriller, Iron Triangle (Rautakolmio), will be published in August 2013.

Leena Lehtolainen has published crime novels, collections of short stories and books for young people. The translation rights of her books have been sold in 29 languages and more than 2 million copies of her books have been sold worldwide.

Further information:
Literary Agent Elina Ahlbäck, + 358 400 548 402 | elina.ahlback(a)

Leena Lehtolainen

Leena Lehtolainen is the top female crime author in Finland: her new titles always head straight to #1 on the Finnish bestseller lists.

Leena’s brand new title The Ripple Effect was published in August 2020. It is already the 15th book of the very popular Maria Kallio series that has sold over 2,5 million copies worldwide!

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The 1993 book Ensimmäinen murhani (My First Murder) kicked off Lehtolainen’s first and on-going crime novel series, which has brought an enthusiastically-received female perspective to the male-dominated detective genre through its distinctively down-to-earth heroine Maria Kallio. The Bodyguard Trilogy, meanwhile, stars a New York-trained bodyguard who is fiercely self-sufficient, highly alert to her surroundings, and haunted by horrific violence in her past.

Lehtolainen published her first novel at the age of 12; this work of juvenile fiction appeared in 1976. Leena Lehtolainen has also published outside the crime genre; her book The Charm of Figure Skating was voted sports book of the year 2010 in Finland and A Life in Six Scenes showed her return to literary fiction.

In her free time, Lehtolainen enjoys all kinds of music from 70’s punk to Schubert and Bach – just like Maria Kallio, the heroine of Lehtolainen’s crime novel series. And just as events in the Bodyguard (trilogy take the heroine Hilja Ilveskero all around Europe, Lehtolainen’s own work takes her to book festivals, exhibitions and other events across the globe.


Leena Lehtolainen

The Ripple Effect

2020, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen


2019, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Killer's Girlfriend

2018, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The End of Innocence

2017, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Charm of Ice

2016, General Nonfiction, Memories & Biographies

Leena Lehtolainen

The Eye of the tiger

2016, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

A Stroke of Sadness

2015, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Iron Triangle

2013, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Devil's Cubs

2012, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Lion of Justice

2011, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Where Have All the Young Girls Gone

2010, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Bodyguard

2009, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

On the Wrong Track

2008, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Nightingale Murder

2005, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Below the Surface

2003, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Before I Go

2000, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Fatal Headwind

1998, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Death Spiral

1997, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Snow Woman

1996, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Copper Heart

1995, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Her Enemy

1994, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

My First Murder

1993, Crime & Suspense

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