Finnish production from Frozen Land director will feature 14,000 extras.

The Unknown Soldier

Finnish director Aku Louhimies will start shooting his new epic The Unknown Soldier (Tuntematon Sotilas) on June 6, with 80 filming days scheduled.

SF Film Finland has the theatrical launch slated for October 2017, timed to the 100th anniversary of Finland’s independence.

The World War 2 historical-drama tells the story of a platoon of ordinary Finnish soldiers in the battlefield between Finland and the Soviet Union. 

The script is adapted from Väinö Linna’s bestselling 1954 novel, and its uncensored version from 2000.

The book, translated into 23 languages, has been filmed twice before as 1955 and 1985 hits.

“The story of The Unknown Soldier is very universal. It’s a gripping portrayal of how a tragedy changes us all,” said Louhimies.

Eero Aho (Tears Of April, 8-Ball) will play Corporal Rokka, Jussi Vatanen (Lapland Odyssey) will play Second Lieutenant Koskela, and Aku Hirviniemi (Finland’s Saturday Night Live) will play Corporal Hietanen.

The production has already recruited 14,000 volunteer extras.

Key partners and funding bodies are the Finnish Film Foundation, Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE and Finnish Military Forces. Domestic distribution will be handled by SF Film Finland.

Louhimies, whose credits include Frozen Land, Naked Harbour and 8-Ball, recently directed the five-part Irish drama series Rebellion (RTE/Sundance/Netflix).

Louhimies also produces The Unknown Soldier alongside Mikko Tenhunen.