Scandi best

Scandi best

January 31, 2024

Ones to Watch

As the winner of the Nordic TV Drama Screenplay Award is announced, read DQ’s interviews with all five nominees, whose work includes the series Descendants, Estonia, Painkiller, Power Play and Prisoner.

For the eighth year, the winner of the Nordic TV Drama Screenplay award has been handed out in recognition of outstanding writing in a Nordic drama series. As is now the tradition, five series were nominated – one each from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden – with the winner announced at a ceremony held last night during the Götenborg Film Festival’s TV Drama Vision event.

Supported by Nordisk Film & TV Fond, the award was first won in 2017 by Mette M Bølstad and Stephen Uhlander for Nobel, followed by Adam Price for Herrens veje (Ride Upon the Storm) a year later. Finland’s Merja Aakko and Mika Ronkainen picked up the prize in 2019 for Kaikki Synnit (All the Sins), while Sara Johnsen won in 2020 for fact-based drama  22 Juli (22 July).

In 2021, Maja Jul Larsen took home the award for Ulven Kommer (Cry Wolf), a Danish series that followed a social worker tasked with investigating an allegation from a young girl that threatens to tear her family apart, and the 2022 winners were Gísli Örn Gardarsson, Björn Hlynur Haraldsson and Mikael Torfasonn for Icelandic series Verbúðin (Blackport), which charts a power struggle set against the backdrop of the country’s fishing industry in the 1980s.

Last year, Kenneth Karlstad claimed the prize for Norwegian drama Kids in Crime, a dramatic coming-of-age story about a teenager who turns to a life of crime.

Find out more about the winner and fellow nominees in this year’s competition, with links to DQ’s interviews with each writer.

Winners: Johan Fasting, Silje Storstein and Kristin Grue
Series title: Makta (Power Play, pictured top of page)
From: Norway
Original broadcaster: NRK
Produced by: Motlys and Novemberfilm
Distributed by: Reinvent Studios
Starring: Kathrine Thorborg Johansen, Jan Gunnar Røise and Anders Baasmo
Air date: October 29, 2023
Blending a story taking place in 1973 with a 2023 setting, Power Play charts the rise of Norway’s first female prime minister, Gro Harlem Brundtland, against a backdrop of truth, lies and bad memory.
Read DQ’s interview with Johan, Silje and Kristin here.

Nominee: Kim Fupz Aakeson
Series title: Huset (Prisoner)
From: Denmark
Original broadcaster: DR
Produced by: DR Drama
Distributed by: DR Sales
Starring: Youssef Wayne Hvidtfeldt, David Dencik, Sofie Gråbøl and Charlotte Fich
Air date: September 1, 2023
The six-part series depicts the life of four prison officers whose jobs are put on the line when the prison’s future comes under threat, leaving them fighting for survival against bad press, an inmate hierarchy and an illicit drug trade.
Read DQ’s interview with Kim here.

Nominee: Miikko Oikkonen
Series title: Estonia
From: Finland
Original broadcaster: MTV, TV4
Produced by: Fisher King
Distributed by: Beta Film
Starring: Jussi Nikkilä, Claes Hartelius, Seidi Haarla, Kaspar Velberg and Pelle Heikkilä
Air date: October 12, 2023
A dramatisation of the tragic sinking of the MS Estonia ferry in 1994 and the subsequent investigation into the disaster, in which 852 people lost their lives.
Read DQ’s interview with Miikko here.

Nominee: Tinna Hrafnsdóttir
Series title: Descendants
From: Iceland
Original broadcaster: Síminn
Produced by: Polarama, Freyja Filmwork and Projects Production
Distributed by: Red Arrow Studios International
Starring: Tinna Hrafnsdóttir, Vignir Rafn Valþórsson, Þuríður Blær Jóhannesdóttir and Hanna María Karlsdóttir
Air date: November 2, 2023
When three siblings inherit a whale-watching business and a summerhouse built by their parents, they clash over their individual claims to the legacy.
Read DQ’s interview with Tinna here.

Nominees: Gabriela Pichler and Johan Lundborg
Series title: Painkiller
From: Sweden
Original broadcaster: SVT
Produced by: Garagefilm International
Distributed by: Reinvent Studios
Starring: Snežana Spasenoska and Dodona Imeri
Air date: January 26, 2024
When proud Balkan mother Dijana is left in chronic pain, with no respite provided by the health service, her live-at-home artist daughter Andrea decides to treat her herself – leading Dijana to become the involuntary protagonist in Andrea’s new art project.
Read DQ’s interview with Gabriela here.

tagged in: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,