Captain Sabertooth swashbuckles his way to the big screen
by Jorn Rossing Jensen
- The brainchild of a Norwegian teacher for a children’s musical production in a local amusement park, the pirate is now starring in Norway’s most expensive family movie
Twenty-five years after he was created by Norwegian singer-songwriter and actor Terje Formoe, Norway’s most famous pirate, Captain Sabertooth, is ready for the big screen.
Following a gala on Friday (19 September) at Oslo’s Colosseum Kino, Norwegian directors John Andreas Andersen and Lisa Marie Gamlem’s €6.1 million feature Captain Sabertooth and the Treasure of Lama Rama will be released nationally on Friday 26 September across 260 screens by the Walt Disney Company Nordic.
Starring Kyrre Haugen Sydness, Vinjar Pettersen, Sofie Bjerke, Odd-Magnus Williamson, Pia Tjelta, Tuva Novotny, Anders Baasmo Christiansen, Jon Øigarden and Robert Skjærstad, the family/children’s adventure was scripted by Lars Gudmestad (Headhunters [+see also:
film profile]) from an idea by Formoe, a former teacher who introduced the character in a summertime musical for children at the Kristiansand Zoo and Amusement Park in 1990, with himself in the lead.
Captain Sabertooth has been a regular in new plays ever since at the park, and his adventures have sold an estimated 1.3 million theatre tickets, 1.3 million DVDs, 1.3 million records and thousands of books, not to mention swords, costumes, T-shirts, belts, bottles and other merchandising. The Sabeltann Ltd company, also controlled by Formoe, has prepared another promotional campaign at the upcoming Hong Kong Toys & Games Fair between 13 and 16 October.
Produced by Frederick Howard, Gudny Hummelvoll, Lars Hellebust and Fredrik Støbakk, for Norway’s Storm Films, Norway’s most expensive children’s and family picture so far has been shot on location in Morocco (Ouarzazate – in the castle built for UK director Ridley Scott’s Kingdom of Heaven), the UK (Cornwall), Thailand (Krabi) and on board the digitally constructed pirate ship The Black Lady.
The captain has appeared in a fully animated movie once before, in 2003, by Swedish director Stig Bergqvist, which took 185,000 admissions in Norway. However, today’s producers-distributors expect to more than double that number for the live-action depiction of Captain Sabertooth’s voyage to the kingdom of Lama Rama, accompanied by 11-year-old Tiny – who is trying to find his missing father – and his girlfriend Raven, as they set off in search of King Rufus’ fabled treasure.