×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

International Financing ‘Salvation’ for Danish Producer

A poster producer for Danish cinema, Sisse Graum Jorgensen, who with helmer Thomas Vinterberg received the prestigious European Union Prix Media Sunday in Cannes for their film project, “The Commune,” is broadening her canvas with “The Salvation,” an 1870-set Western inspired by the Nordic sagas.

Jorgensen (“A Royal Affair,” “The Hunt”) is one of the top producers at Zentropa, a Danish outfit co-founded by Lars Von Trier.

The Trust Nordisk-repped “Salvation,” which Jorgensen describes as an epic tale of revenge, lost love and greed, stars Mads Mikkelsen as a settler who avenges his family’s murder and unleashes the fury of a notorious gang leader.

Helmed by Kristian Levring and penned by Anders Thomas Jensen, the pic’s international cast also includes Eva Green and Jeffrey Dean Morgan. The pic, now shooting in South Africa, will be in English and Danish.

Since “Salvation” has a higher-bracket budget of €10.5 million ($13.5 million), Jorgensen structured the film as an international co-production with Forward Films in the U.K. and Spier Films in South Africa.

“Denmark is a small country so we often need to co-produce with two or three countries,” Jorgensen said.

The pic lensed in South Africa, which boasts sweeping landscapes, top-notch crews and tax incentives, per Jorgensen.

That necessity to look for funding outside Denmark is indeed a great incentive to tell stories that appeal international audiences.

“Part of my job is to make sure that even when we make a local film that is shot in the Danish language it works domestically and in international markets,” Jorgensen said. “I’m constantly looking at how distributors in other countries work with my films to market.”

And although “Salvation” is for the most part in English, Jorgensen said she is still a firm believer in the crossover potential of films in Danish.

Exhibit A: “Hunt” and “Royal Affair” sold worldwide, she pointed out.

Vinterberg concurred, “Every time I dig deeper into the Danish soil, the smaller we make a film, the more universal it becomes.”

Vinterberg’s followup to Hunt, the 1970s-set “Commune” centers on life inside a small community of academics in Denmark. Although the film is not an autobiography, Vinterberg said he grew up in such a community and as a result the film will be inspired by his memories.

Over the years Jorgensen has developed long-term relationships with such Danish helmers as Vinterberg, Susanne Bier (“Love Is All You Need”) and Nikolai Arcel (“A Royal Affair”). And while all three are constantly being courted by Hollywood, Jorgensen is confident there’s room for local, personal films that can cross borders.

“I’m not the kind of producer who buys book rights and I feel very privileged to be working with Directors who have a strong ideas, develop their own stories and make their own signature films,” Jorgensen said.

Although Vinterberg said his next movie after “Commune” will be a Hollywood studio-financed English-language film, he’s still very much committed to making films in Denmark.

“The older I get the more interesting it is for me to make my own films, that no one else wants could have made,” said the helmer following the Media prize ceremony.

More Biz

  • Contract Placeholder Business WGA ATA Agent

    Signs of Solidarity and Strain Emerge as Week 2 of WGA-Talent Agency Standoff Begins

    Hundreds of WGA members rallied solidly behind their union last week as the industry grappled with uncertainties spurred by the sudden break between writers and their talent agency representatives. But as the standoff heads into its second week, signs of strain among some WGA members are beginning to emerge. Shalom Auslander, author and creator of [...]

  • Woodstock 50 Festival Postpones Ticket On-Sale

    Woodstock 50 Festival Postpones Ticket On-Sale Date

    UPDATED: The troubled Woodstock 50 festival has run into more difficulties, as multiple sources told Variety late Friday that the April 22 on-sale date for the event has been postponed. Agents for artists scheduled to perform at the festival — which include Jay-Z, Dead & Company, Chance the Rapper, Miley Cyrus, Imagine Dragons and Halsey [...]

  • National Enquirer - Jeff Bezos

    Hudson Media CEO James Cohen Purchases the National Enquirer

    Hudson Media’s CEO James Cohen announced Thursday that he will purchase the National Enquirer as well as American Media’s other tabloids, the Globe and the National Examiner. With the purchase of the National Enquirer, which Cohen reportedly bought for $100 million, he plans to strengthen their collaborative efforts, documentary shows, weekly podcasts, and theme parks. [...]

  • Amazon

    Amazon Music’s Free Tier Is More Advertising Play Than Spotify Killer, Analysts Say

    When news began to spread last week that Amazon Music’s long-anticipated free streaming tier was imminent, headlines emerged about its threat to Spotify and Apple Music, with some stories saying that Spotify’s stock price dropped in response to the news. But not only was today’s launch of the free tier basically a soft one — [...]

  • Nicki MinajCFDA Vogue Fashion Fund Dinner,

    Nicki Minaj Parts Ways With Longtime Managers (EXCLUSIVE)

    Nicki Minaj has parted ways with Gee Roberson and Cortez Bryant and Blueprint/ Maverick Management, a source close to the situation confirms to Variety. She had worked with the pair for the majority of her career. The source says the decision was mutual and amicable, and there was no specific reason for the split, adding [...]

  • Amazon

    Amazon Music Launches Free Streaming Tier, Through Alexa Only (for Now)

    Amazon Music today basically soft-launched its free streaming tier, in which U.S. customers of its Alexa voice assistant will have access to top Amazon Music playlists and thousands of stations, at no cost. The limited access that the new free service provides — it’s only available through Alexa, and when the listener requests a song, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content