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The Valhalla Murders - out now on Netflix worldwide!


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Süddeutsche Zeitung

Fun to see that Süddeutsche Zeitungrecommends The Valhalla Murders.




New Novel

My newest novel is out! It took me 6 years to finish it, but it's finally here. It's in Icelandic, called Dimmuborgir (Dark Cities), and publishes by Forlagið, Iceland's biggest publishing house.

The book is about literature critic Elmar Arnarsson, who gets new information about the death of his best friend Felix 25 years earlier. He's always been certain that Felix was killed, but becomes obsessed with trying to find out the truth about his friend's fate.But revisiting his painful past shakes Elmar's lonesome existence to the core.

The title of the novel comes from this place in Iceland, famous for its unusually shaped lava fields.

The Reykjavík Grapevine

I did a small interview in The Reykjavík Grapevine about my quarantine in Barcelona and other things. It's in English and you can read it here.

Dagbladet Review

Dagbladet, one of Norway's biggest newspapers, writes a very favorable review about The Valhalla Murders, in an article called "Icelandic Crime Pearl":

"...this mystery is executed with such sophisticated craftsmanship that it stands out in a burgeoning serial market. The Valhalla Murders lives up to genre expectations in every way: It is a clinically cool and visually hyper-realistic crime mystery that could have taken place anywhere, but magnificently added to Icelandic lowlands."

Concluding: "Netflix's first Icelandic series is quality content of the hard-boiled, unbleached Nordic noir type."

Screen Rant

The popular film site Screen Rant recommends The Valhalla Murders, saying: "Travel to the cold and monochromatic country of Iceland by enjoying this unique whodunnit. The series follows a female detective named Kata whose town becomes a killing ground for an unknown serial slayer. The person seems to be targetting older men, and the crimes are connected by knife slashes around each victim's eyes.

Adding: "The Valhalla Murders manages to provide an inside look into the workings of Kata's Icelandic police department, into the family dynamics that inform detective work, and into the public response to violence."

Review from Chile

Here's a nice review from Chile: "The greatest strength of this production is its characters. Human, fragile, full of flaws and weaknesses."

Adding: "The Murders of Valhalla are a pleasant surprise from northern Europe, which refreshes with different languages ​​and rhythms a genre that seems exhausted in the West, but that can always be successfully reinvented."

Entertainment Weekly

The Valhalla Murders is one of the 10 foreign-language shows that Entertainment Weekly recommends to watch during the quarantine. Not bad.

Review in La Diaria

La Diara, Uruguay's second biggest newspaper, published a very nice review about The Valhalla Murders, praising its characters, the writing, and the original approach to the genre, in terms of the last three episodes, concluding: "The Valhalla Murders is worth every minute of its duration and deserves a good marathon in these days of withdrawal (or any other day)."


Slavoj Zizek

Fun to read that the famous philosopher Slavoj Zizek watched The Valhalla Murders and liked it. I used to study his work back in University, when I did my philosophy degree.

Aftonbladet again

The Valhalla Murders is recommended again in Aftonbladet as one of the things to watch this week on Netflix.

Valhalla's Inspiration

Here's an article in Spanish about the success of The Valhalla Murders on Netflix since it dropped almost two weeks ago. It also talks about the real case that served as an inspiration for the series.

IMDb Popularity

The Valhalla Murders is nr. 33 on the list over the most visited TV series on the website, close to The Plot Against America, which premiered around the same time. Pretty cool.


Polish Review

Here's a nice review on a Polish website, which calls The Valhalla Murders a "condensed detective story" and goes on to "recommend this captivating, well-shot Icelandic series with conviction".

German Review

Here's a review for The Valhalla Murders in German. I'm not sure what the man is saying, but he gives the series a 7/10, and the clip has almost 30.000 views. Not bad.

Aftonbladet

Aftonbladet, Sweden's biggest newspaper and one of the biggest papers in Scandinavia, puts The Valhalla Murders on its list of 6 new TV series to watch (along with great shows like The Plot Against America and Hillary).

It writes:"Really beautiful, dark, moody and difficult Nordic noir, which has just landed on Netflix.Icelandic "The Valhalla murders" (eight parts) not only has the perfect title, but also a solid gloom, winter-white plot, social misery, cops wrestling with darkness in the past and of course horrific murders."

More Top 10 Lists

Here's a small update on the Netflix Top 10 lists that The Valhalla Murders has been on for the past few days. In addition to the countries I mentioned the other day, it's also been in:

- Austria
- Greece
- South-Africa
- Argentina
- Australia

Again, thanks for watching!

Top 10 lists

The Valhalla Murders, which came on Netflix last Friday, has entered various Top 10 lists of the content most watched all around the world. This weekend, it's been on the Top 10 lists in:

- USA
- Canada
- France
- Germany
- Spain
- Italy
- Netherlands
- Turkey
- Poland
- Sweden
- Norway
- New-Zealand
- Brazil
- Uganda

Thanks for watching!

Articles on The Valhalla Murders

Some interesting articles about The Valhalla Murders have been published the past few days, explaining its origins, real-story inspiration, and so on. Most of them have spoilers.

Here's an article on the Breidavik boys' home that inspired the series.

And here's another one on the same topic.

Here's another article by the same journalist that dives deep into the series, especially the Nordic mythology of it.

And finally, here's a short article on Decider - Stream It Or Skip It - that tells people to stream it.


First Reviews

The first reviews for The Valhalla Murders have started to appear. Here are some of them:

"A riveting whodunit ... bound to keep you hooked to your screen for eight hours straight ... one of the strongest foreign-language series I have watched on Netflix in a while." The Cinemaholic

"A powerful whodunit ... a well-crafted thriller ... a great watch." Meoww

"A solid crime-mystery thriller that should satisfy fans of this genre." Heaven of Horror

"An impressive Icelandic limited series which boasts a frigid atmosphere and an engaging murder-mystery plot." Ready Steady Cut

"Genre-fans grab it, newcomers watch it." Moviepilot

Lists

The Valhalla Murders has been on various lists all around the world for TV series to watch this March on Netflix. Here are a few of them: Popsugar, Glamour UK, Vocal, and Time Out Portugal.

The series comes on Netflix this Friday, yes, the 13th. Can't wait!

Netflix

The Valhalla Murders will come to Netflix worldwide March 13th, as Iceland's first Netflix Original Series. I'm very excited to see the reaction from people around the world!

UNA

The film UNA (Recurrence), written by Marteinn Thorsson and me, is in full pre-production mode. It had a few "test" shooting days last December, with principal photography planned to start in September. It's produced by Gudrun Edda Thorhannesdottir.

Marteinn Thorsson also serves as the director, while the script is based on a novel by me from 2012. I'm looking forward to bring you more news about this exciting project.

Valhalla-mordene

The Valhalla Murders is now being shown on DR - the Danish national broadcasting company. Fun times.

The Valhalla Murders

The Valhalla Murders started airing in Iceland this Christmas, to very positive feedback.

Tonight, the third episode is on the Icelandic National Broadcasting service (RÚV), and later this month, it will air on the BBC and DR, before hitting Netflix in March.

La Vanguardia

Yesterday I was in the Spanish/Catalan newspaper La Vanguardia, talking about Scandinavian culture in Barcelona, The Valhalla Murders, writing, and some other things. It's in Catalan.


BBC Culture

Fun to see that BBC Culture puts The Valhalla Murders on its list of ten TV shows to watch this December.


Trailer

The trailer for the TV series BROT (The Valhalla Murders) is out! I'm the head writer of the series and really excited for it to air.

To see the trailer, click here. It's in Icelandic, but the international one will be aired later.

The series will air in Iceland on the 26th of December, and internationally on Netflix in March 2020.

For news about the series, you can check out its Facebook page.

The Haunted

I've been developing the first Icelandic horror series for the past couple of months with director Thor Saevarsson.

It's an eight-episode series and we're calling it The Haunted. Icelandic production companies True North and Mystery will produce.

Hope to bring you more news about this exciting project in the coming months!


New Novel

I've made a publishing deal for my next novel, with Iceland's biggest publishing house, named Forlagið.

The novel, titled Dimmuborgir (Dark Cities), will be published in April next year. I'm really looking forward to it, as I've not published a novel now in almost five years.


News about UNA

The producer of UNA (Recurrence) is in an interview at Nordisk Film and TV Fond, talking about her projects, including UNA. Here's the interview, and here's the part about UNA:

"Meanwhile Thórhannesdóttir’s majority Icelandic feature projectRecurrence (Una)by Marteinn Thórsson (XL) is currently in pre-production. The supernatural thriller based on a script by Thórsson and Óttar M. Nordfjörd (The Valhalla Murders) centres on Una (22), whose son disappeared a year ago and is presumed dead. After a suicide attempt, a sinister creature appears and Una starts to live a parallel story that happened a hundred years ago, a story of rape, violence and murder, linked to another Una.

“The film will mark Thorsson’s return to genre-filmmaking and be in the vein of his earlier filmOne Point Zerowhich competed at Sundance [2004] and was subsequently sold to more than 40 territories. He will also gather some of the talent who worked with him onOne Point Zerosuch as Udo Kier”, sa…

News on The Hidden

This was announced in this year's Berlinale; exciting news about a script I've been working on for the past years. If all goes well, it'll be shooting later this year.

Netflix Deal

I'm happy to tell you that Netflix has bought the international screening rights to a TV series I've been working on for the past couple of years. The deal was announced at the Gothenburg film festival and reported by Variety. The series is called The Valhalla Murders and is currently filming. It will premier in Iceland in December, and be on Netflix sometime in 2020.

The Columnist

I've become a columnist for the Icelandic weekly-newspaper Mannlíf, writing column every few weeks. It's a fun new job, not too stressful, where I get to express my opinion on whatever topic I see fit. My first column was about Icelander's obsession with exercising outside in the cold, while I like taking it easy inside instead. The column is here and in Icelandic.

Spanish Interview

I did an interview recently, in Barcelona, with a Spanish writer/journalist who lives in Iceland. The interview is in Spanish and can be found here.

Favorite books

I was in a small column in the Icelandic newspaper Mannlíf about my favorite books, or those who've influenced me to most. Since it's impossible to answer, I named the first book that I remember affected me, and the last one - The Brothers Lionheart by the amazing Astrid Lindgren, and the fantastic Call me by your Name by André Aciman.

New Novel

I've finished my next novel. I started it around five years ago, but had to put it on ice for various film projects. However, I finally managed to finish it the other day and hope it gets published next year. It's in Icelandic and called Dimmuborgir (Dark Cities), inspired by true events of a bullying case in Reykjavik in the late 90s. It's a coming-of-age thriller.

The title comes from this mysterious but beautiful place.

Nordisk Film & TV Fond

The TV series I've been working on, The Valhalla Murders, received funding from the Nordisk Film and TV Fond. Very honored, and very honored to be part of the fine team making this series:

"The Valhalla Murders produced by Iceland’s Truenorth for RÚV was granted NOK 2.5 million. The 8x50’ crime show is created and directed by Þórður Pálsson from a screenplay by Margrét Örnólfsdóttir (Trapped 2, Prisoners), written in association with crime author and poet Óttar M. Norðfjörð.

Icelandic born police profiler Arnar who lives in Denmark, is asked to go back to his native country to investigate the first serial killer case. He teams up with the local senior inspector Kata who resents his arrival, as she is the lead detective on the case. The murders don’t seem to have much in common until they connect it to a home for troubled boys dated back to the 1980’s.

In the title roles are Nína Dögg Filippudóttir (Trapped, Prisoners) and Björn Thors (Prisoners). Top crew persone…

DR (Danish Broadcasting)

Here's an article in Danish about DR, the Danish Broadcasting Corporation (produced TV series like The Bridge, The Killing). It's handling the international sales for the TV series I'm writing, The Valhalla murders, and that's already been sold to 12 countries, according to DR Sales.

UNA (Recurrence)

UNA will start it's pre-production in May, to start shooting early 2019. The project has also been selected for Focus Asia in Udine. More here.

The concept drawing is done by art director Solrun Ósk.

TV Series

A TV series I've been working on for over a year with some very talented people got a production grant from the Icelandic Film Center. The Icelandic Broadcasting Service (RÚV), the Danish Broadcasting Service (DR), and a few other international TV channels are already on board.

The grant is 50.000.000 Icelandic Krona, or around 410.000 Euros.

The series, titled The Valhalla Murders, is planned to go into pre-production in May, and start shooting in August. Very excited about this!



Production Grant

My film project UNA (Repetition in English) has been honored with a production grant from the Icelandic Film Center. It's 110.000.000 Icelandic Krona, or over 900.000 Euros. The director is Marteinn Thorsson, and shooting is planned to start early next year. Truly great news!



TV Interview

I did a TV interview on El Punt Avui, a Catalan TV station. It's in English, 24 minutes long, where I talk about my career, Iceland, and other stuff. You can watch it here.


Catalonia

Since I live in Barcelona and have been following the situation here closely, I've been in various interviews in Iceland about the Catalan crisis. Here are some of them: In the TV news on Channel 2, in RÚV, In MBL, and a radio interview in X-ið.


Media

I'm happy to announce that my horror film project, RECURRENCE, recently received a 50,000 euro development grant from Creative Europe Media. The fee will go into further development of the project, which I hope will go into shooting sometime in the near future.

Strategic Partners

Two of my film projects have been chosen to participate in this year's Strategic Partners in Halifax, Nova Scotia, that takes place from 14th to 17th September. It's a big venue where film projects are introduced to possible buyers, sales agents, financiers and film commissions from around the world. Very honored.

Midnight

Recently a project I'm working on with producer/director David Oskar Olafsson was granted the first screenplay grant by the Icelandic Film Centre. It's a psychological thriller called Midnight, takes place in Vancouver in the 80s, and is about a woman who starts working as a late night radio DJ. Can't say much more at the moment - stay tuned.

Canet de Mar

I haven't checked in for a while, been busy working on the TV project The Valhalla Murders. About a month ago, I spent a week in Canet de Mar on Costa Brava with my two friends (director Thordur Palsson and writer Margret Ornolfsdottir), where we mapped out a few episodes of the Nordic noir thriller. Hope to bring some news about the project, or some others, soon!


The Valhalla Murders

Today in Icelandic newspaper Fréttablaðið, there's an interview with director Thordur Palsson about an original TV series I'm working on with him and a great team of others. It's called The Valhalla Murders and might shoot this fall if everything works out. More later.



The Hidden - small update

A few weeks ago, there were auditions in London for my horror movie, The Hidden. Some interesting actors and actresses read and showed interest. Hopefully some of them will be announced in Cannes next month.

Talks with a possible distributor and investors have also started and will probably come clear in the following weeks. Hope to bring you some exciting update on that as well.

Projects Announced

Two of my projects were announced in the Berlinale this year. One is my horror thriller The Hidden that's currently casting in London, possibly being shot next fall. The other one is a TV series called The Valhalla Murders. You can read more about the projects in Variety and ScreenDaily.

Valhalla Murders

Here's a little piece about a TV project I'm currently working on, based on an idea by up-and-coming director Thordur Palsson. Very exciting indeed

The Hidden

The other day, a friend of mine and me did an interview about a project we're working on. It's called The Hidden and being produced by Icelandic companies TrueNorth and Mystery, and UK production company Iron Box.

Funding has started, it was introduced in Toronto last month, and will also be introduced in AFM next month. Casting is also starting, in London and LA. It will be shot largely in Iceland, but the film is in English.

2nd Grant

A film project I'm working on, about the Icelandic 16th Century axe-murderer Axlar-Björn, has been granted the 2nd script grant from the Icelandic Film Center.

Here's a picture from Öxl (in Snæfellsnes), where he lived and killed his victims. A scary setting, perfect for the movie.

Sun Cross in French

The French blog Polar des Glaces, which is about Nordic crime fiction, did a very ambitious introduction to my crime novel from 2008, Sólkross or Le Sang d'Odin in French. The blog post details many things related to the plot of the novel and includes pictures from places where the book takes place.

Haugesund

A film I wrote was pitched in Haugesund, Norway, this week:

"Recurrence, dir Marteinn Thorsson, prod Gudrun Edda Thorhannesdottir, DUO Productions (Ice).
Supernatural thriller about a troubled young woman, with a parallel story about another woman in the early 1900s. Thorsson said, “The film is has a similar mood and atmosphere to The Witch and also The Others. I’m big fan of Guillermo Del Toro so it has those fantastical elements. I want to make a supernatural thriller that has substance and appeals to a large audience.” To shoot autumn 2017."

And a project, where I have story-by-credits, was also introduced in Norway:

"The Deposit, dir Asthildur Kjartansdottir, prod Eva Sigurdarddottir, Askja Films (Ice) [pictured]
Complications arise when a bankrupt fortysomething woman rents spare rooms in her gorgeous house to a Muslim woman from Uzbekistan and an illegal immigrant from Uganda with her 6-year-old daughter. Sigurdarddottir, who was the line producer on Ram…

Recommended Read

My recently published Macedonian translation of Hnífur Abrahams is being recommended as one of three books to read this summer by popular Macedonian news page CRNOBELO.



Encyclopedia of Nordic Crime Fiction

I'm honored to have been entered into this year's edition of the Encyclopedia of Nordic Crime Fiction. My entry is on p. 228-9 and can be read here.

Easter Radio Program

Yesterday, on Easter Sunday, there was a radio program about my e-book, The Gospel of John (Jóhannesarguðspjall). It's 50 minutes long and in Icelandic.

Axlar-Björn

I did an interview in Morgunblaðið about one of the screenplays I'm currently working on. It's about Iceland's only serial killer, called Axlar-Björn, a 16th Century axe murderer! I'm super excited about this project and that the Icelandic Film Center has given the director, Davíð Óskar Ólafsson, and myself the first writing grant (out of three) to bring this remarkable story to the screen.

Here's a short article in English about Axlar-Björn.


The Hidden

Here's an interview with Kristinn Thordarson (pictured), Head of Production in the Icelandic production company Truenorth. I'm involved in some projects with them, and one of them, The Hidden, is starting to take off:

"The first project to get off the ground this fall is the thriller The Hidden about a group of US geologists traveling to a remote part of Iceland who become the preys of the mythical ‘hidden people’."

Truenorth recently signed a contract with Iron Box Films in the UK to co-produce.