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Babelsberg Backs Oil Thriller The Elephant

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood June 23, 2010 at 12:30PM

There Will Be Blood examined our greed for oil. The doc expose Gasland wowed audiences at LAFF and on HBO. And now comes a new movie that looks at oil. Norway's Monster Film and Northern Alliance Group are co-producing an oil thriller, The Elephant, to be directed by Hans Peter Moland (The Beautiful Country).
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Thompson on Hollywood

There Will Be Blood examined our greed for oil. The doc expose Gasland wowed audiences at LAFF and on HBO. And now comes a new movie that looks at oil. Norway's Monster Film and Northern Alliance Group are co-producing an oil thriller, The Elephant, to be directed by Hans Peter Moland (The Beautiful Country).

The Little Film Company will sell rights to the film, which was written by Petter Skavlan, inspired by Magnar Jonsgaard’s novel Black Rain about American drillers' search for oil in the frigid and often lethal North Sea, where Jonsgaard worked on several oil platforms during the 70’s. "Elephant" is slang for an oil field that produces at least 500 million barrels. "This story changed an entire society,” states Moland, who recently won an Audience Award at Berlin for A Somewhat Gentle Man, starring Stellan Skarsgård. “It is Norway’s rags-to-riches story, and at its core it reveals the abuse of huge wealth and its impact on individual lives.”

This article is related to: Genres, In Production, Independents


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.