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HBO's Documentary Series on Adnan Syed from 'Serial' Has Hit Australian TV Screens

SBS will air the four-part program, which delves into the case that's captivated millions around the globe.
By Sarah Ward and Samantha Teague
March 23, 2019
By Sarah Ward and Samantha Teague
March 23, 2019

Two decades after Hae Min Lee's murder, the Baltimore high school student's horrific plight continues to dominate the true crime landscape. After featuring on the first season of Sarah Koenig's grimly addictive podcast Serial, it's now the basis for a new documentary series, The Case Against Adnan Syed.

The four-part HBO series picks up where everyone's 2014 obsession left off — the trailers promise to reveal 'a new chapter' — not only exploring 18-year-old Lee's death in 1999 and her ex-boyfriend Syed's conviction in 2000, but the latter's ongoing quest to have the extremely complex legal matter reassessed in the years since he was found guilty. Everything from Lee and Syed's relationship, to the original police investigation and trial, to the developments up until now feature, with the film gaining exclusive access to Syed, his family and his lawyers.

While the show started airing on HBO in the US in March, Australians can now watch the series, too — it's after airing on SBS throughout April, the four episodes are now available on SBS On Demand.

Check out the HBO trailers below:

The series couldn't come at a more crucial time for Syed, who was convicted of first-degree murder, sentenced to life in prison, and has been fighting his case through the courts ever since. While he was granted a new trial in 2016, that ruling was subsequently appealed by the State of Maryland — only for the Court of Special Appeals to agree to vacate Syed's conviction and finally give him that retrial last March. Earlier this month in Maryland's Court of Appeals, that retrial request was denied, but Syed's attorney has committed to keep battling.

Splashed across the small screen, it's certain to make for compelling viewing — but if you think you've spent too much time mulling it all over across the past five years, filmmaker Amy Berg has you beat. Unsurprisingly given how complicated the matter is, the director has been working on the project since 2015. And, with her excellent doco background — with Berg helming 2006's Oscar-nominated 2006 Deliver Us from Evil, about molestation in the Catholic Church; examining the West Memphis Three's quest for freedom in 2012's West of Memphis; and tackling the sexual abuse of teenagers in the film industry in 2014's An Open Secret — her new venture is certain to be thorough.

As they did for West of Memphis, Nick Cave and Warren Ellis provide the score.

The Case Against Adnan Syed is now streaming on SBS on Demand

Image: SBS. Updated: May 2, 2019. 

Published on March 23, 2019 by Sarah Ward
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