LONDON — As excitement among soccer fans builds in anticipation of next year’s European Championship Finals, a comedy about how the Danish national team rose from underdogs to European champions in the 1992 tournament has scored at the box office in Denmark, and is preparing to enter the international arena at the American Film Market next month.
The film has grossed DK19 million ($2.91 million) in Denmark so far, which is excellent for a country of 5.63 million inhabitants. More than 5% of the Danish population has seen the film since its release by distributor SF Films at the end of August, with admissions expected to cross 300,000 this week. Tickets sold for the film are more than double those for studio movies such as “Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” and “Kingsman: The Secret Service.”
The movie was directed by Kasper Barfoed (“The Candidate,” “The Numbers Station”), who himself witnessed the final match of the tournament when he was a child, and was written by Barfoed and Anders August (“Superclasico,” “Funny Man”).
The film is a U.K./Danish co-production with U.K.-based Kris Thykier (“Woman in Gold,” “Trash”) of Archery Pictures teaming up with Meta Louise Foldager (“A Royal Affair,” “Melancholia”) and Nina Bisgaard of Denmark’s Meta Films.
Thykier commented: “We set out to make a film that would delight audiences in its home market, and now hope that its local success will transfer to the rest of the world.”
The film, which is being represented in international markets by HanWay Films, is being billed as “The Full Monty” with soccer players.
Meanwhile, Denmark’s present-day soccer team’s chances for getting to the European Championship hang in the balance. The team has failed to qualify for the finals automatically, and it now has to fight through the playoffs next month.