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A Hijacking


Outstanding thriller set on board a hijacked Danish ship - a fresh look at the emotional and moral cost of piracy.

Even if a screening is sold out, tickets are often available 30 minutes before the start of the film at the box office at each venue.

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  • Director-Screenwriter Tobias Lindholm
  • Producer René Ezra, Tomas Radoor
  • With Pilou Asbæk, Søren Malling, Dar Salim
  • Denmark 2012
  • 99 mins
  • Sales TrustNordisk

Writer-director Tobias Lindholm has already garnered attention with his work on Borgen and collaborations with Thomas Vinterberg (including The Hunt, also screening in this year’s festival). In turning his perceptive eye on the now infamous subject of Somali hijackings in the Indian Ocean he creates a unique arena in which to explore extremes of experience and the ethics of putting a price on a human life. A Hijacking is a fresh, tense and visceral film, which is all the more affecting for its refusal to rely on the easy sensationalism of gratuitous violence and high drama. Lindholm instead focuses on the very immediate emotional journeys of two characters: kidnapped ship’s cook Mikkel and the company head office CEO tasked with managing negotiations. Greed, brutality and moral compromise are terrifying and pernicious, and although both the company and pirates are reprehensible, Lindholm doesn’t point the finger of blame. Few, it seems, can emerge unscathed from such an experience.
Sarah Lutton

Director statement

Before I was born my father was a seaman, but he never spoke to me about it. Maybe that is why the sea has always been on my mind. With the hijackings of the Danish-owned freighters Danica White and CEC Future in 2007 and 2008, I became aware of a reality that I did not know existed. A reality where shipping companies are forced to negotiate directly with pirates. A reality where pirates earn millions of dollars and a reality where seamen are held hostage for months without any influence on their own fate. I couldn’t make a film about the truth of the hijackings in the Indian Ocean, because I don’t believe that truth exists. But I could make a film about seamen, pirates, CEOs and relatives. Because they do exist. And if A Hijacking feels like it is about them, then I am very close to my goal.
Tobias Lindholm

Director biography

Born in Denmark in 1977, he graduated in Screenwriting from the National Film School of Denmark 2007, and soon took script credits on shorts by Lisa Aschan and Michael Noer, as well as penning several episodes of the BAFTA-winning Danish TV series Borgen (2009-10). He and Michael Noer then co-wrote and co-directed the feature R, which won the Danish Critic’s Bodil Award for Best Film in 2011. He has also co-written Thomas Vinterberg’s most recent features, Submarino and The Hunt (also in this year’s LFF).


2010 R (R: Hit First, Hit Hardest) [co-d]
2012 Kapringen (A Hijacking)

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