2 Feb2023


Ahead of the film’s market premiere at EFM, Beta Cinema announces first deals for Operation Napoleon to France (Mediawan), Spain (Twelve Oaks), Poland (Hagi Film), Former Yugoslavia (MegaCom), Japan (Tohokushinsha) and Taiwan (AV-Jet). The gripping English-language thriller is based on the eponymous best-selling novel by Iceland’s master of crime, Arnaldur Indriðason and features a stellar cast, led by Icelandic newcomer Vivian Ólafsdóttir (It Hatched), Iain Glen, best known for his role as Dr. Alexander Isaacs in the Resident Evil film series and as Ser Jorah Mormont in Game of Thrones.

The sweeping story takes us from modern Iceland to America and Nazi Germany at the end of World War II. It centers on young Icelandic lawyer Kristin, who gets drawn into the vortex of an international conspiracy when she receives grainy footage of an old airplane wreck, recently revealed by the melting of one of Iceland’s largest glaciers. The old German World War II plane not only brings ruthless criminals onto the scene, but also CIA vice director William Carr, who had already been secretly trying to remove the wreck for a long time. Kristin places herself in great danger, refusing to rest until the key has been discovered that will solve the riddle of “Operation Napoleon”…

Operation Napoleon is directed by Óskar Þór Axelsson, who’s feature films Black’s Game and I Remember You both were sensational box office hits in Iceland. Axelsson directed from a script by Marteinn Þórisson (Silent Witness, Jack Taylor), based on the international bestselling novel by Arnaldur Indriðason. Indriðason’s Reykjavík Murder Mystery series has sold over 15 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 41 languages. For Silence of the Grave, Indriðason was awarded the renowned Gold Dagger, given annually by the Crime Writers' Association of the United Kingdom for the best crime novel of the year. He has also been awarded the Nordic Crime Novel Prize for two years running. 

The cast is rounded out with Ólafur Darri Ólafsson (Trapped, The Minister, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, True Detective and Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald), Jack Fox (Sky Atlantic’s breakout series Riviera, Sandition, Cheaters), Wotan Wilke Möhring (Valkyrie, Sløborn), Atli Óskar Fjalarsson, Adesuwa Oni, Anette Badland, Birna Rún Eiríksdóttir, Höskuldur Þór Jónsson, Nanna Kristín Magnúsdóttir, Þröstur Leó Gunnarsson and Hjörtur Jóhann Jónsson. 

Operation Napoleon is produced by Tinna Proppé and Hilmar Sigurðsson of Sagafilm, Iceland, alongside Dirk Schweitzer and Anita Elsani for Splendid Entertainment, Germany. Kjartan Thor Thordarsson, Ralph Christians and Adalsteinn Jóhannsson serve as executive producers. Operation Napoleon originates from within the Beta family, being one of the first theatrical movies since Beta Nordic Studios had acquired a 25% stake of Reykjavík-based Sagafilm in 2020. Support came from the Icelandic Film Fund, Nordisk Film & TV Fond, Film- und Medienstiftung NRW and Deutscher Filmförderfonds. German public broadcaster ZDF is co-producing and has secured free TV rights.

Sam Film releases theatrically in Iceland on Feb 3, Splendid Film/24 Bilder will follow on March 9. Beta Cinema will host 2 market screenings at the upcoming European Film Market in Berlin.