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TELEVISION Denmark

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DR begins filming new series Liberty

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- The Danish pubcaster has started principal photography on an adaptation of Jakob Ejersbo’s novel, which will become a major drama series in 2018

DR begins filming new series Liberty
The cast of Liberty (l-r, top to bottom): Carsten Bjørnlund, Sofie Gråbøl, Anton Hjejle, Connie Nielsen, Magnus Krepper and Charlie Karumi (© DR Drama)

When Danish author Jakob Ejersbo died in 2008, at only 40 years old, he left behind a 1,600-page script, which became three novels, The Africa Trilogy: Exile, Liberty and Revolution, based on his own experiences when he lived with his family in Tanzania. Ejersbo had previously won Denmark’s top literary prize for Nordkraft (2002), which was filmed three years later by Danish director Ole Christian Madsen, bearing the international title Angels in Fast Motion.

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On 22 May, Danish pubcaster DR started principal photography for the adaptation of Liberty, a drama series set to air on the station in 2018. Danish writer-director Asger Leth has dramatised the novel, and the show will star Danish newcomer Anton Hjejle, who is still to complete his actor’s education, while Sweden’s Mikael Marcimain (whose Gentlemen [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
won the Nordic Council’s Film Prize in 2015) will be conceptual director.

“Now we are breaking one of our principles: only to make television drama on original material, and not on books,” said DR’s head of drama, Piv Bernth. “Liberty is a major work in modern Danish literature, describing a highly dramatic cultural clash between people and in people, between two continents, between rich and poor, and between hope and despair. It contains many of the contradictions and dilemmas of human life.”

Produced by Karolina Leth for DR Drama, and directed by Mads Kamp Thulstrup, the series following Christian’s (Ejersbo’s) search for identity – “to find himself, his possibilities and limitations, his conflicts with his parents, and his friendship with an African, Marcus” – boasts a multinational cast including Denmark’s Sofie Gråbøl, Carsten Bjørnlund, Connie Nielsen, Sweden’s Magnus Krepper and Kenya’s Charlie Karumi.

“It is both a gift and a challenge to make Liberty into a TV drama, and Leth’s work is both original and an extension of the original story,” Bernth concluded. After shooting in Denmark, the production will move to South Africa on 2 June.

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