Paramount Television and Anonymous Content have acquired the rights to 2013 novel The Black Viking by Icelandic author Bergsveinn Birgisson to adapt as a television series, with The Imitation Game and Passengers helmer Morten Tyldum attached to direct and executive produce.
Brigisson, who lives in Norway, holds a Ph.D. in Nordic studies from the University of Bergen. The Black Viking, which currently is being sold at the Frankfurt Book Fair, is the result of his search for traces of Geirmund Heljarskinn, his forefather — one of the most powerful viking kings through history — but whose saga has mysteriously disappeared. The Black Viking was written in Norwegian and originally was published in 2013. So far, it has been translated in several languages but not English. That wasn’t a problem for Norwegian director Tyldum, who had the book brought to him by Guri Neby and Norway-based Einar Film.
Tyldum is exec producing and directing the project as part of the two-year overall deal he signed with Paramount TV this fall following his stint directing the pilot for the production company’s Amazon series Jack Ryan.
In addition to the Jennifer Lawrence-Chris Pratt sci-fi saga Passengers and the Benedict Cumberbatch starrer The Imitation Game, Tyldym helmed the Jo Nesbo adaptation Headhunters. He was recently tapped to direct Exit West, based on Mohsin Hamid’s bestseller, for Joe and Anthony Russo’s production venture.