EXCLUSIVE: Uber-producer Jerry Bruckheimer has tapped Danish filmmaker Nicolai Fuglsig to direct the Afghanistan war pic drama Horse Soldiers for Lionsgate. The project follows a team of CIA agents and special forces who head into Afghanistan in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks in an attempt to dismantle the Taliban.
Having entered Afghanistan covertly, a small band of special forces soldiers rode on horses to confront the Taliban. Outnumbered 40 to 1, they pursued the enemy army across the mountainous Afghanistan terrain and, after a series of intense battles, captured the city of Mazar-i-Sharif, which was strategically essential to defeat their opponent throughout the country. Soon, however, they find themselves even more outnumbered when hundreds of Taliban POWs actually try to ambush them, leaving the men in a desperate battle to survive and hold on to their military gains and lives.
Molly Smith, Trent Luckinbill and Thad Luckinbill from Black Label Media are co-financing and producing with Bruckheimer. The project is an adaptation of Doug Stanton’s book, with Peter Craig and Ted Tally writing.
Fuglsig is an acclaimed photojournalist. In 1999, his book of photos of a classified nuclear accident in Russia won the ICP Infinity Award in New York, the World Press Photo First Prize and the Kodak prize for Best Photographer in the World Under 30. He successfully segued into directing with recorded footage that became a 15-minute documentary, Return Of The Exiled. Fuglsig has won the Gold Lion in the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival and the Grand Prix at the Midsummer Awards for his advertising work, notably a Sony Bravia commercial featuring 250,000 bouncing balls let loose on the largest hill in San Francisco. He has also won an Emmy and been recognized by the DGA for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials, winning the award twice for Fema ad “Waiting” and Guinness ad “Sapeurs,” respectively.
Horse Soldiers marks Fugslig’s feature directing debut. He is repped by WME.