MAY/JUNE 2014 NEWS

06.13.14

THIS WEB SITE CELEBRATES ITS 10TH ANNIVERSARY TODAY!

06.08.14

It has just come to my attention that Stellan's son Sam got married last year. He is the only Skarsgård who has stepped out of the limelight and followed in his mother's footsteps by becoming a doctor. The lanky 32-year-old and his girlfriend Sanna were married in Stockholm on September 28, 2013. Stellan now has the opportunity to become a Grandpa!

05.17.14

There's news today from Cannes about a new Scandinavian Viking film, based on the book by Frans G. Bengstsson called RÖDE ORM, which translates to Red Snake, Red Worm or Red Serpent. Take your pick. Danish film producer Peter Aalbaek Jensen announced that Hans Petter Moland will direct the movie based on a script by Tobias Lindholm. Jensen told the press, "We have made a package deal with the whole Skarsgård family. Stellan gets to play the older Röde Orm  and then the rest of his sons can play him at different ages." Stellan, however, laughs at this bold gambit. He makes it clear that he has not signed on the dotted line. Presently filming John Le Carre's "Our Kind of Traitor" in the French Alps, Stellan told the press, "I have not signed any contract yet. Hans Petter rang the other day and asked if I was interested. I do like the part. It's a fantastic book, one of the juiciest tall tales of Swedish literature. A book of great humanity and humor which also contains a fantastic adventure."

It's not the first time that Stellan has been involved in a film adaptation of this book. About 20 years ago he would have played the role of the young Röde Orm in Hasse Alfredsson's never-realized version. Stellan says, "Hasse had written a wonderful script that was in line with Bengtsson's book, but the funding was difficult. The script ended up in a script factory and came back with soap opera clichés where women weep when men leave. The Americans who were involved wanted to make it into a conventional television series."

Bengtsson published the beloved two-part adventure novel in 1941 and 1945. The story has been adapted as a radio play, a comic book, and a musical. In 1963 Jack Cardiff directed a very loosely adapted English-Yugoslavian production called "The Long Ships", starring Richard Widmark and Sidney Poitier.

Moland is clear about the source material - "Even if the books were published 70 years ago, the content has not grown old fashioned. There are ingredients and depictions of Vikings that have never before been told in movies." He adds that Bengtsson’s novels offer a political and social analysis of the times of the Vikings.

Stellan has previously taken on roles in Viking films; he played Hrothgar in "Beowulf and Grendel" (2005) and Birger Brosa in the semi-Viking "Arn" films (2007 and 2008). The production will be huge by Scandinavian standards, and actors from Norway, Sweden and Denmark are expected to join the cast. Filming will begin in 2016 in Southwest Sweden with a budget around SEK 100 million. Like the "Arn" saga, it will be released as two feature films as well as a four-part TV series.