Exactly one year ago today, we were talking about director Tomas Alfredson’s next directorial project, “The Brothers Lionheart.” It was supposed to be the most expensive Scandinavian film ever made and was slated for a Christmas 2014 release. Well, since April 29th of last year, we’ve heard diddly squat about that film and now it seems the “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” director has moved on to something else entirely.
Alfredson has signed on to co-write and direct “The Snowman” which is based on the Jo Nesbo novel of the same name. This project was originally on Martin Scorsese’s plate, but his busy schedule forced Universal to start looking elsewhere (though he'll stick around as an executive producer). Given the Scandinavian setting of “The Snowman,” perhaps the Swedish-born Alfredson is a better fit anyway. Alfredson is currently collaborating on the script with Soren Sveistrup (creator of “The Killing,” the original Danish version). Here’s the book synopsis of “The Snowman”:
It is November in Oslo and the first snow of the year has fallen. Birte Becker comes home from work and praises the snowman her husband and son have made in the garden. But they haven't made a snowman. As the family stand by the sitting room window looking out in amazement at the snowman, the son notices that it is facing the house. The black eyes are staring at the window. At them.
Detective Inspector Harry Hole receives an anonymous letter signed "The Snowman." Later he finds an alarming common thread in all the old disappearance cases. Married women go missing the day the first snow falls. That same night Sylvia Pedersen is fighting her way through the first snow in a forest outside Oslo. She knows she is running for her life, but she doesn't know what from. Nor does she know what lies ahead. Fortunately. [Variety]
Elsewhere, it seems acclaimed Irish director Jim Sheridan has finally found his follow-up project after 2011’s “Dream House.” Sheridan is currently working on a script with Audrey O’Reilly about the 1988 Pan Am terrorist bombing that took place in Scotland. The film will follow the true story of Jim Swire, whose daughter was among the 270 casualties when the plane blew up over a Scottish village while on its way to the US. Swire, unconvinced by the accusations against Libya, lead a campaign to uncover the truth regarding the bombing.
It was later discovered that the plane went down thanks to a Syrian-based terrorist group who were taking orders from Iran. Apparently, the attack was in response to a US Navy air strike that hit an Iranian commercial jet six months before the events in Scotland.
Says Jim Sheridan, "It’s scary what they didn’t reveal to us at the time. It doesn’t really matter, the people are dead and you can’t bring them back to life. But in the future, we need clear investigations of these things or else you’re going to end up with flight MH370 [the missing Malaysia Airlines plane]."
The “My Left Foot” director has described his film as “a drama basically looking at the effect on a family of terrorism” and he promises that the movie will “happen in the next few years.” We sure hope so. [THR]