2. August 2015

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Norwegian public television NRK’s miniseries Nobel will be shot in part in the Czech Republicover the coming few weeks. The eight-part series, a political thriller set in the present, is the story of a Norwegian soldier serving in Afghanistan who becomes embroiled in a political conspiracy. Czech professionals have worked on numerous Scandinavian historical series and fantasy films in recent years. Nobel director Per Olav Sørensen is returning to the Czech Republic for a second time, after having filmed The Heavy Water War (Kampen om tungtvannet) here in 2013, a series set during the Second World War that broke ratings records in Norway and was sold around the world. Sørensen says the Nobel screenplay grew out of his desire to portray the impact of war on present-day Norwegian society. In the lead role is Aksel Hennie, a popular Norwegian actor perhaps best known to international audiences for the 2011 film adaptation of the Jo Nesbø novel The Headhunters (Hodejegerne). “Nobel focuses on Erling Riiser (Aksel Hennie), a Norwegian soldier in the Special Forces (FSK). He and his platoon are in action in Afghanistan and under orders given by NATO and the Norwegian Foreign Office. Then Erling and his soldier-friends are suddenly involved in a tricky political conspiracy,” Sørensen says. “This has a great impact on his life, his family and also, in the end, on Norway as a nation.” (Source: Nordisk Film & TV Fond) Nobel will be filmed over 81 days in total. The Norwegian part began shooting in Oslo this April. The production will be in the Czech Republic from 3–21 August, after which the crew (including several Czech members) heads to Morocco for the final four weeks of filming. In the Czech Republic, the 100-member crew (80 of whom are local) will be shooting mainly in Prague at the KCD Film Studios, as well as on the grounds of Barrandov Studios and at the Grandhotel Pupp in the spa town of Karlovy Vary, which partly inspired Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel. “Norwegian producers chose to film partly in the Czech Republic because of the positive experience director that Per Olav Sørensen had when shooting the very successful series The Heavy Water War here,” says producer Paul Müller from Sirena Film, which is ensuring filming in the Czech Republic. “Also playing a role, of course, were quality and price – including the incentives – and the possibilities for filming, including building the largest studio set for the series, a replica of a Kabul luxury hotel’s lobby. The hotel interiors will be shot in Karlovy Vary’s Grandhotel Pupp; its destruction by a terrorist attack will be filmed on sets in the studio,” Müller adds, noting that another elaborate set will be that of a military base in Afghanistan. Of the total project budget of 222 million crowns, the spend in the Czech Republic will be 34 million crowns. The series is being produced for Norwegian public broadcaster NRK by Monster Scripted. The project is supported by the Norwegian Film Institute and will draw incentives from the Czech State Cinematography Fund.