Ef sköpunarkrafturinn fær að flæða verður árangurinn góður, viðtal við Sigurjón Kjartansson um “Ófærð”

Sigurjón Kjartansson. (Mynd: Art Bicnick/Reykjavik Grapevine)

Sigurjón Kjartansson er í viðtali við Reykjavík Grapevine um Ófærð og hvernig aðstandendur verksins nálguðust verkefnið.

Í viðtalinu, sem York Underwood tekur, kemur meðal annars eftirfrandi fram:

Where did the idea for Trapped come from?

Baltasar came up with this great idea: a body is found in a snowy town in a fjord and the town gets locked in. Nobody can get in and nobody can get out. Which is, someone has said, an Agatha Christie idea. The mansion whodunit without the mansion. We saw this as a very strong concept.

Baltasar, Magnús V. Sigurdsson and I started RVK Studios. We knew a crime show was something that we should do. I come from television. Baltasar had made successful Icelandic films and was finishing Contraband at the time. We wanted to do a ten-part series and we wanted to do it outside of Reykjavík. So far, the crime shows I had done were all set in Reykjavík. They were like any other city-based crime show. If we wanted to do something that got attention we would have to play with Iceland’s nature thing.

Iceland’s nature is not flowers and pretty birds. It’s bad weather and snow.

Once the idea was out there, what was your role in making this show a reality?

My job was to bring in writers and head-write the show. I brought in two Icelandic writers, Ólafur Egill and Jóhann Ævar Grímsson. We worked for months mapping out a storyline. Then we drifted apart and I was alone for a while writing the show. We were commissioned by RÚV and there was some interest in Scandinavia, but still we, RVK Studios, knew if we were going to make this series, we would need co-producers from Germany and France, because those are big markets. Eventually, we succeeded in getting producers from Germany and France involved. They came in as pre-buy and we knew, finally, we had the official green light on the series.

I started to work with Clive Bradley, the english writer. We formed a little writers’ room with Klaus Zimmerman, the executive producer from Germany and the script editor from France, Sonia Moyersoen. We mapped out two episodes at a time. While we were pre-production I was getting scripts from Clive and then finally the last shooting script was something I took and translated and made rewrites. It was a very happy cooperation.

Trapped is a very Icelandic show. How was it writing with foreign writers?

It was interesting to work with foreigners on this show because they were able to bring the perspective of what is really ‘Icelandic’. I am so inside it that there are things I wouldn’t notice. They could see things I never saw. And vice-versa. When Clive was writing “He opened his umbrella…” I could be like “No! No! No! People in Iceland don’t use umbrellas.” It’s not practical with the wind here. Also, having long drinks when you get home. You’d have to be an alcoholic to do that in Iceland. We made the lead character drink milk all the time as a joke, a little detail.

You started your career in comedy. How is it different being a dramatist? 

When I first started writing drama, I really felt it was easier than comedy. My comedy writing had been sketch shows. I feel drama is writing lots sketches into one narrative and they don’t have to be funny. It’s just scenes, which have to have, as a good sketch has to have as well, a beginning, a middle and an end. My education in comedy suits me very well in drama.

Viðtalið í heild má lesa hér: How To Write Iceland’s Most Popular TV Show, “Trapped.” – The Reykjavik Grapevine

Klapptré er sjálfstæður miðill sem birtir fréttir, viðhorf, gagnrýni og tölulegar upplýsingar um íslenska kvikmynda- og sjónvarpsbransann. Ritstjóri er Ásgrímur Sverrisson.