The King’s Choice, the true story of bravery against the Nazi’s in 1940 which broke box office records in Norway and was submitted as the country’s official foreign language submission to the Oscars last year, was just acquired for theatrical distribution in the states by Samuel Goldwyn Films. It will bow in August.
The King’s Choice is about three dramatic days in April 1940 when the Germans invaded and the King of Norway was presented with an ultimatum from the German armed forces: Surrender or die. With the German air force and soldiers hunting them, the Norwegian royal family was forced to split up and flee. Crown Princess Märtha heads to Sweden with their children, while King Haakon and the Crown Prince Olav flee to a small farming area and meet the Germans head on. After three days of desperately trying to evade the Germans, King Haakon makes his final decision. He refuses to capitulate, even if it may cost him, his family and many Norwegians their lives.
“The King’s Choice exemplifies the bravery of men standing against tyranny in this truly inspiring historic epic shedding light on a defining, and often unremarked, moment in history,” said Peter Goldwyn, President of Samuel Goldwyn Films.
The film stars Jesper Christensen (Spectre), Anders Baasmo Christiansen (In Order of Disappearance), Karl Markovics (Unkown), Tuva Novotny (Framing Mom), Arthur Hakalahti (The Light that I Feel), and Katharina Schüttler (13 Minutes).
Interestingly, Norway’s Crown Prince and Princess traveled to Toronto last year for a screening during the film festival. He is the great-grandson of the film’s protagonist, King Haakon VII.
The film was written by Jan Trygve Røyneland and Harald Rosenløw Eeg and was produced by Finn Gjerdrum and Stein B. Kvae of Paradox Film 1 AS. It was co-produced by Nordisk Film Production, Newgrange Pictures, Film Väst and Copenhagen Film Fund og Zentropa International Sweden.
The deal was negotiated by Peter Goldwyn and Dirk Schurhoff of Beta Film GmbHon on behalf of the filmmakers.