Miso Film Norway Unveils ‘Tainted’ Details, Drive to Target Youth Audiences (EXCLUSIVE)

HAUGESUND, Norway  — Miso Film Norge, the Oslo-based arm of one of the most prominent of Scandinavian production outfits whose credits include “1864,” Warrior“ and Netflix’s “The Rain,” has part lifted the curtain on its latest scripted venture, the teen revenge-thriller “Tainted.”

The TV outfit produced the 8×30 series in collaboration with Norwegian public broadcaster NRK, which will broadcast the youth-oriented drama in late October/early November of 2019.

Miso Film, NRK and the Norwegian Film Institute covered the budget of the NOK 24m ($2.7m) series, on while U.K.-based Fremantle, Miso’s owner, is handling international sales.

Adapted by series creator Mahmona Khan from her own novel, the series follows eighteen-year-old Sumera, a Norwegian-Pakistani girl who falls victim to physical and sexual assault on her way home from work. With the help of her three closest friends, she then sets out to take vengeance on her rapist.

“This is a dark thriller for a youth audience,” says Miso Film’s Cecilie Aspenes, “and that’s something new in the Scandi market. [It might begin with] a girl falling victim to a crime, but it is not the story of her victimhood, it’s about her taking revenge and getting her life back together with the help of her friends.”

Though she could not speak of the full cast yet, the producer revealed that the show will have four adolescent female leads — three of whom of Pakistani-Norwegian origin.

“That also sets the show apart,” adds Aspenes. “The series shows Norwegian teens as they are today. We are a multicultural country, and luckily so. I think it’s nice to show that we represent a broader perspective of reality… [This, coupled with the show’s] cool, energetic style, makes ‘Tainted’ something I haven’t seen before – and neither has the target audience.”

Miso Norway has just finished production on  “@Chica Chile Norway” (pictured) a coming-of-age dramedy that will be the Norwegian company’s first feature length film, and the producer was in Haugesund to present three excerpts at the festival’s New Nordic Film’s Works in Progress program.

Like her series, Aspenes film project, about a 15-year-old girl coming into adulthood while her brother serves in Afghanistan, will be aimed at the youth market. And that’s part of a pointed strategy on the producer’s part.

“It’s tough to finance a film for youth,” says Aspenes. “But my attitude is you have to try, because that audience really needs good local productions. They go to the cinemas, they do want to see films. But if we don’t make local projects, then we’ll lose them to Hollywood.”

Cecilie Aspenes

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Renee Zellweger Rufus Wainwright Sam Smith

    Renée Zellweger: Judy Garland Was 'My Childhood Hero'

    Awards buzz is building around Renée Zellweger for her performance as Judy Garland, emerging as a frontrunner in the Oscar race for best actress. But for her, the real prize was paying tribute to Garland, of whom she’s been a lifelong fan. “Nobody was prettier, nobody sang prettier…the adventures she had, [she was] my childhood [...]

  • Topic Studios

    Layoffs Hit Topic Studios as TV Division Relocates to West Coast (EXCLUSIVE)

    A small round of layoffs has hit Topic Studios this week in the television division, insiders familiar with the company told Variety. One of the insiders said three executives at the New York-based producer and distributor are out: senior vice president of scripted programming and Viacom alum Lisa Leingang, vice president of development Mona Panchal [...]

  • 'Downton Abbey' Music Gets 'Bigger, Better,

    As 'Downton Abbey' Hits the Silver Screen, the Music, Too, Gets 'Bigger, Better, Grander'

    When “Downton Abbey” fans hear that familiar strings-and-piano theme, a Pavlovian response ensues: Get to the television immediately, because you don’t want to miss a minute of the addictive Crawley family melodrama to follow. This week, with the “Downton Abbey” movie reaching theaters on Friday, fans can’t wait for their fix of Lady Mary and [...]

  • 45 Seconds of Laughter

    Film Review: '45 Seconds of Laughter'

    “Everyone is worth more than their worst act,” said Roman Catholic sister and anti-death penalty advocate Helen Prejean, and it’s with these words that “45 Seconds of Laughter” closes. It’s an apt sentiment on which to leave Tim Robbins’ sincerely felt documentary study of the therapeutic acting workshops run by his own theater company in [...]

  • Julie Andrews

    Julie Andrews Selected for AFI's Life Achievement Award

    The American Film Institute Board of Trustees has selected Julie Andrews as the recipient of the 48th AFI Life Achievement Award. The award will be presented to Andrews on April 25 in Los Angeles. The ceremony will be telecast on TNT. “Julie Andrews is practically perfect in every way,” said Kathleen Kennedy, chair of the [...]

  • 4127_D001_00007_RC Phyllis Logan stars as Mrs.

    'Downton Abbey' to Dominate Box Office Weekend With $30 Million

    The feature film version of “Downton Abbey” is heading for an impressive $30 million opening weekend at 3,079 sites for an easy victory at the North American box office, early estimates showed Friday. The launch of Brad Pitt’s space drama “Ad Astra” will land in second with about $20 million, while Sylvester Stallone’s action-thriller “Rambo: [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content