TV4/Nordic Drama Queens hire Jesper Ganslandt, Oskar Söderlund for Vargasommar

Mar 21, 2023
Dimitris Passas

NOTE: This article is a republication- Source: Nordisk Film & TV Fond (by Annika Pham).

Co-stars Eva Melander, Eliot Sumner and Henrik Dorsin have boarded the Swedish crime series based on Hans Rosenfeldt’s eponymous novel.

Filming is due to start July 24 in and around the historical small town of Haparanda, northern Sweden, on the border with Finland.

TV4’s biggest drama bet for 2024, Vargasommar (Cry Wolf) is produced by talent-driven Nordic Drama Queens, with co-financing from Filmpool Nord, Germany’s ZDF and US group Fifth Season (Killing Eve, Normal People) which handles global sales. Jesper Ganslandt is directing.

Published in 2020 and sold to nearly 30 territories, the debut solo novel by The Bridge’s creator Hans Rosenfeldt Vargasommar, will be directed Jesper Ganslandt (Snabba Cash, Jimmie).

After a first draft co-penned by The Bridge’s writing duo Rosenfeldt and Camilla Ahlgren, (read our story: The Bridge co-writers on their next Swedish crime show Cry Wolf (Vargasommar) - CLICK HERE, the screen adaptation was handed over to the experienced Oskar Söderlund (Snabba Cash, The Dark Heart).

The main cast consists of Finnish actress Eva Melander (Border, The Unlikely Murderer), Henrik Dorsin (Triangle of Sadness, Solsidan) and young British musician-turned-actor Eliot Sumner (Ripley, No Time to Die).

Melander plays Hannah Wester, a middle-aged policewoman in the sleepy town of Haparanga. When human remains are found in the stomach of a dead wolf, the quiet Wester knows that the summer won’t be like any other. The remains can soon be linked to a bloody drug deal across the border in Finland. Suddenly, the small border town becomes the site of a chain of brutal events, as a Russian assassin (played of Sumner) is sent to try to get hold of the lost money and drugs.

The suspense will be driven by both the strong antagonist, described by Rosenfeldt as “a kind of sidekick to the Bond-villain, or a Modesty Blaise gone rogue”, and by the setting in summery Haparanda, where the sun never sets.

Rosenfeldt said “this is will be a new twist to the crime genre”, with “exciting creepy things happening not in the dark but in broad daylight for the entire series.”

Discussing his style, Ganslandt said he “want to make a series that moves between dark humour, intense tension and brutal violence.”

Nordic Drama Queens co-founder Josefine Tengblad who serves as producer together with Eiffel Mattsson and first got hold of Hans Rosenfeldt book for TV4-C More in her former job as Head of Drama, is thrilled to finally start filming with a stellar creative team on board.

“It’s a dream team, with Hans’ amazing source material, Jesper’s strong direction and Oskar’s own vision for the story. Plus the cast is amazing! Eliot who is Sting’s son is a true rising talent, we will see Eva in one of her first major leading role in a series, and Henrik [Dorsin] from Triangle of Sadness will play a very interesting character. I can’t wait to start shooting!”

Speaking about the project, Piodor Gustafsson, TV4 Nordic drama director said he is also excited to “finally get to film Hans Rosenfeldt's fantastic novel. It is packed with strong characters, TV drama and brutal action. The fact that we also have Jesper Ganslandt and Oskar Söderlund to refine the content is a dream come true,” he said.

“Our ambition is to provide our users with a high-quality suspense drama at the best international level. Vargasommar is our big investment in 2024. We are also looking forward with excitement to the next book in the same series, he added.

TV4’s next big bet for this year is the €15m Swedish/Finnish/Estonian disaster series Estonia, sold by Beta Film.

Meanwhile Fifth Season’s co-owned Nordic Drama Queens is currently working with Sofia Helin on a slate of films and series, as part of a first look deal with the Swedish star actor/creator - read our story: Nordic Drama Queens strike first look deal with Sofia Helin -

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