Berlin 2012: 'False Trail' Director Kjell Sundvall to Helm 'Paganini Contract'

The crime thriller is the second in a planned eight film franchise based on the Lars Kepler bestsellers.


BERLIN - Swedish director Kjell Sundvall will direct The Paganini Contract, the second film in the new Scandinavian crime franchise that started with The Hypnotist, which Oscar-nominee Lasse Hallstrom is currently shooting in Stockholm. Sundvall's last film was the crime thriller False Trail (aka Hunters 2) starring Peter Stormare (Fargo), a box office hit in Sweden last year, where it earned some $7.5 million. Principle photography on The Paganini Contract is set to begin this September.

Finnish actor Tobias Yilliacus will reprise his role as police inspector Joona Linna, the hero of the Kepler books. Production firms Svensk and Sonet plan to film all eight books in the Linna series. Three have been published so far in Sweden. The Hypnotist was published in English last year and was an instant bestseller. The Paganini Contract is set to come out in English later this year.

"Our plan is to get a different top Scandinavian director to film each one of the 8 books," said Borje Hansson, of Svensk. "We hope to shoot one film a year. The Hypnotist will come out this fall and the plan is to release The Paganini Contract in the fall of 2013."

The Hypnotist has already virtually sold out worldwide, with major indie players including Prokino in Germany, TF1 in France and Alliance for U.K., Canada and Spain, snatching up rights to Lasse Halstrom's first Swedish film in 25 years. A U.S. deal is expected soon, likely during the EFM in Berlin. Svensk says it has received offers from several U.S. distributors.