Over the last four years, Danish titles have been predominant in the race for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Danish director Susanne Bier’s In a Better World[+] won the award in 2010, racking up a third win for the country, after Gabriel Axel’s Babette’s Feast in 1987 and Bille August’sPelle the Conqueror in 1988.
Ole Christian Madsen’s SuperClásico[+] was on the shortlist for the nominations in 2011, while Nikolaj Arcel’s A Royal Affair[+] and Thomas Vinterberg’s The Hunt[+]received the nomination in 2012 and 2013, respectively.
Now, the Danish Film Institute has named the three Danish candidates for its official Oscar submission, which will be announced on 18 September: Niels Arden Oplev’sSpeed Walking, Pernille Fischer Christensen’s Someone You Love[+] and Nils Malmros’ Sorrow and Joy[+].
After his Swedish Millennium Trilogy movie,The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo[+], and two US films, Arden Oplev has returned to his home turf for the portrayal of a young man who struggles to find his footing on the shaky ground of adolescence. His mother’s sudden death triggers a chain of events that affects everyone in the small community.Pilou Asbæk, Sidse Babett Knudsen and Villads Bøye play the leads in the film, which will open on 28 August.
Selected for the 2014 Berlinale, Someone You Love is the story of Thomas Jacob, a world-famous singer-songwriter based in Los Angeles, who travels back to Denmark to record a new album with his regular producer. His grown-up daughter then shows up with her own 11-year-old daughter, Noa. Starring Swedish actor Mikael Persbrandt and Danish actress Trine Dyrholm, Christensen’s fourth feature sold 166,000 tickets in Denmark.
Launched as an official entry at last year’s Rome International Film Festival (8-17 November), and starring Jacob Cedergren, Helle Fagralid and Nicolas Bro, Sorrow and Joy is an autobiographical depiction of the life of a filmmaker and his teacher wife. In February 1984, while in a psychotic state, his wife killed their nine-month-old daughter in their home, while he was out delivering a lecture. The film took 272,000 admissions domestically.