Norway’s Cinenord and Beta Film have partnered on eight-hour series “Atlantic Crossing,” centering on the true story of Norwegian Crown Princess Martha, who fled from the Nazi occupation of her country to become an influential figure in world politics, living in the White House and trying to persuade President Franklin D. Roosevelt to enter the war.
The drama for Norwegian broadcaster NRK, set in the U.S., Britain and Norway, will start production this summer on locations in and outside Europe. Cinenord produces and Beta Film handles international distribution. Executive producer Silje Eik Hopland and showrunner-director Alexander Eik have attached U.S.-based Avy Kaufmann to cast, among others, the role of Roosevelt, who will play the leading part next to the crown princess.
The series, which is aiming to be one of the biggest Scandinavian productions to date, will receive $3.5 million in subsidies through the Norwegian Film Institute’s incentive program. Together with “Wisting,” another Cinenord project, the company will receive the biggest amount of Norwegian funding ever granted, leaving behind top scorer Universal’s “The Snowman,” starring Michael Fassbender.
“’Atlantic Crossing’ is an inspiring story of power struggles, courage, world politics, and a woman’s political and personal awakening, all embedded in the drama of war,” according to a statement. “It is also a story about love, which is put to the biggest test imaginable when the crown princess and her husband, Olav, who lives in exile in London, are forced to be apart for five years.”
Showrunner and director Eik said: “The crown princess’ flight from Norway brought her to the epicenter of world power, the White House, while the rest of the world was on fire. Here she realizes, for the first time, that she has real political influence, and becomes an informal, but central figure in Washington’s political scene. Her close relationship to President Franklin D. Roosevelt will take center stage in the series. Until now, the history of war has always been the history of men: the heroics, the sabotage, the battles. It is high time to show a different perspective, which is why we’ll see these world events through women’s eyes.”
Co-scriptwriter Linda Kallestein said: “We will also get to know other strong female figures, such as Eleanor Roosevelt, lady-in-waiting Ragni, the mother Ingeborg, and the child princesses Ragnhild and Astrid, just to name a few.”