Nikolaj Arcel's THE PROMISED LAND and Anders Walter's BEFORE IT ENDS has been shortlisted for the Danish Oscar entry 2024, and are now eligible as Denmark's candidates in the International Feature Film Category.
Copenhagen, 24 August 2023 – A shortlist of three films was today announced by the Danish Film Institute, as the Danish Oscar committee convened for the first part of their submission process. The shortlist includes two TrustNordisk titles, namely Nikolaj Arcel and Zentropa's epic feature THE PROMISED LAND and Anders Walter and Nordisk Film's WW2 drama BEFORE IT ENDS.
Whether THE PROMISED LAND or BEFORE IT ENDS will become Denmark's candidate in the International Feature Film category for the 96th Oscars will be decided on 26 September.
About the two films:
THE PROMISED LAND
THE PROMISED LAND has attracted strong interest, and next week the film will world premiere in Competition at the prestigious Venice International Film Festival. The film is currently selected for several prominent festivals, including Toronto and San Sebastián, and has been picked up by US distributor Magnolia Pictures.
Directed by critically acclaimed director Nikolaj Arcel (A ROYAL AFFAIR, 2012), the creative force includes Danish writer/director Anders Thomas Jensen (RIDERS OF JUSTICE, 2020), who co-penned the script with Arcel. Mads Mikkelsen (INDIANA JONES AND THE DIAL OF DESTINY, 2023; ANOTHER ROUND, 2020) take up the leading role as Captain Ludvig Kahlen. The strong ensemble also includes Amanda Collin, renowned for Ridley Scott's HBO Max science-fiction drama series RAISED BY WOLVES (2020-22) alongside Simon Bennebjerg (BORGEN, 2022; THE PACT, 2021) together with Gustav Lindh (RIDERS OF JUSTICE, 2020; QUEEN OF HEARTS, 2019) and Kristine Kujath (SICK OF MYSELF, 2022).
In 1755, the impoverished Captain Ludvig Kahlen sets out to conquer the harsh, uninhabitable Danish heath with a seemingly impossible goal; to build a colony in the name of the King. In exchange, he'll receive a desperately desired Royal name for himself. But the sole ruler of the area, the merciless Frederik de Schinkel, arrogantly believes this land belongs to him. When de Schinkel learns that the maid Ann Barbara and her serve husband have escaped for refuge with Kahlen, the privileged and spiteful ruler swears revenge, doing everything in his power to drive the captain away. Kahlen will not be intimidated and takes up the unequal battle - not only risking his life, but also the family of outsiders that has formed around him.
THE PROMISED LAND is a gripping story about the conquest of the heath, the tale of a proud and uncompromising man, and the woman who becomes his ally in the fight against evil, death and perdition.
Produced by ZENTROPA ENTERTAINMENTS in co-production with ZENTROPA BERLIN, ZENTROPA SWEDEN and FILM I VÄST with support from DANISH FILM INSTITUTE MARKEDSORDNINGEN, DEN VESTDANSKE FILMPULJE, EURIMAGES, CZECH FILM FUND, MITTELDEUTSCHE MEDIENFÖRDERUNG, MOIN FILM FUND HAMBURG SCHLESWIG-HOLSTEIN, MEDIENBOARD BERLIN-BRANDENBURG, DEUTSCHER FILMFÖRDERFONDS, SVENSKA FILMINSTITUTET HEDESELSKABET in cooperation with TV 2, NORDISK FILM & TV FOND, PLAION PICTURES, SVT Developed by THE CREATIVE EUROPE PROGRAMME – MEDIA OF THE EUROPEAN UNION Distribution NORDISK FILM DISTRIBUTION International sales TRUSTNORDISK
© 2023 ZENTROPA ENTERTAINMENTS 4, ZENTROPA BERLIN GMBH and ZENTROPA SWEDEN AB
THE PROMISED LAND will be released widely in Denmark on 5 October 2023.
BEFORE IT ENDS
Written and directed by Anders Walter behind the Oscar-winning short film HELIUM (2013) and produced by Nordisk Film Production in collaboration with Growing Studios.
The film features a stellar cast in the lead roles including GAMES OF THRONES-star Pilou Asbæk whom in recent years has had significant roles in huge international films and TV series such as the HBO hit series GAMES OF THRONES (2016-19), the Paramount Pictures feature OVERLORD (2019), the BAFTA award-winning drama series BORGEN (2010-13), and now he is back at the helm of this major Danish title. Alongside Pilou, the feature stars Danish actress and actors; Katrine Greis-Rosenthal (A TASTE OF HUNGER, 2021; A FORTUNATE MAN, 2018), Ulrich Thomsen (THE MARCO EFFECT, 2021; BROTHERS, 2004, THE CELEBRATION, 1998) and Morten Hee Andersen (A MATTER OF TRUST, 2022; RIDE UPON THE STOM, 2017-18) as well as German actor Peter Kurth (INVENTING ANNA, 2022; BABYLON BERLIN, 2017: HERBERT, 2015).
When a Folk High School is turned into an internment camp for German refugees, the headmaster couple Jakob and Lis and their children are thrust into an impossible situation. Should the family help the refugees - or stand firm in the Danish resistance against the Germans? BEFORE IT ENDS is inspired by true events and depicts a dark chapter in the history of Denmark: The handling of 250,000 German civil refugees who came to Denmark in the spring of 1945.
The feature is a touching and nerve-wrecking drama about a family under pressure.
BEFORE IT ENDS is written and directed by Anders Walter and produced by Miriam Nørgaard, Mette Høst Hansen and Tomas Radoor for Nordisk Film Production. The film is produced in collaboration with Growing Stories with support from The Danish Film Institute, FilmFyn, Nordisk Film & TV Fond, RUV, YLE and TV 2 Denmark.
BEFORE IT ENDS released in Denmark on 24 August 2023.