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PRODUCTION Denmark / USA / Canada

Per Fly ready to shoot Backstabbing for Beginners


- The Danish director will have The Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson and Oscar-winning actor Sir Ben Kingsley in the leads of his first English-language feature

Per Fly ready to shoot Backstabbing for Beginners
Director Per Fly (© Per Morten Abrahamsen)

Danish director Per Fly, whose latest feature, Waltz for Monica [+see also:
interview: Edda Magnason
interview: Per Fly
film profile
(2013) – a biopic of singer-actress Monica Zetterlund – won four Guldbagges, including Best Director and Best Actress (for Edda Magnason), has just left for Toronto to prepare for his next film, Backstabbing for Beginners.

The first production from Denmark’s Creative Alliance, owned by directors Fly, Lone Scherfig, Ole Christian Madsen and Dagur Kári, and producers Nikolaj Vibe Michelsen and Malene Blenkov, will have English-language dialogue and will be shot from January 2016 in Copenhagen, Toronto and Jordan, with The Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson and Oscar-winning British actor Sir Ben Kingsley in the leads. 

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The political thriller scripted by Fly with US screenwriter Daniel Pyne is based on Backstabbing for Beginners: My Crash Course in International Diplomacy, written by Danish former UN employee and whistle-blower Michael Soussan. Soussan lands the job of his dreams: programme coordinator for the UN’s Oil-for-Food Programme. But he then discovers that he is part of a multi-million-dollar fraud, with dysfunctional diplomats, cynical governments and greedy companies all trying to make money out of Iraqi oil.

Soussan (Hutcherson) is supported by hisboss and mentor (Kingsley), but when he realises that the corruption reaches the innermost circles, he knows that the only way to stop it is by disclosing everything – with the reputation of the UN, the career of his boss, his love affair with a Kurdish woman and probably his own life at stake. 

American cinematographer Brendan Stacey and Danish editor Morten Giese have been signed up for Fly’s first English-language feature, which will be produced by Michelsen and Blenkov, for Creative Alliance, with Lars Knudsen and Jay Van Hoy, of Parts & Labor – an American company with more than 20 films to its credit – and Daniel Bekerman, of Canada’s Scythia Films. The premiere is scheduled for spring 2017.

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