Kenny Starfighter - the hero of a 1997 sci-fi television series in Sweden - will return in a $5.4m (Euros 3.4m) feature, Kenny Begins, produced by Swedish production house, S/S Fladen (which is controlled by Scandinavian major, Nordisk Film), in collaboration with Nordisk and Swedish public broadcaster, SVT, and supported by Swedish regional film centre, Film i Skåne, and the Swedish Film Institute.
Originally targeted at children audiences, Kenny Starfighter achieved cult status with Johan Rheborg in the lead as the most hopeless student ever to attend the Galaxy Hero Academy. A member of Swedish comedy group, the Killing Gang, Rheborg will repeat his role in Kenny Begins.
Carl Åstrand and Mats Lindborg, who directed the original television version with Pontus Løwenhielm, will realise the script by Lars V Johansson, Åstrand and Lindborg, and S/S Fladen's Patrick Ryborn (Wonderful And Loved By All) will produce. Nordisk's all-Scandinavian première for 'Sweden's so far biggest action comedy' has been scheduled for February 2009.
Kenny Begins will receive $1.3m (Euros 0.9m) support from the Swedish Film Institute, which has allocated $4.2m (Euros 27m) production funding for seven new features.
A $1.3m top grant also goes to Ulf Malmros' comedy, The Wedding Photographer (Bröllopsfotografen), which Jan Blomgren will produce for Bob Film Sweden. Also scripted by Malmros, the film follows a provincial photographer who has been assigned to cover a society marriage in Djursholm. He falls in love with the bride's sister and tries to adjust to the upper classes, but with little success.
The institute will chip in $0.7m (Euros 0.4m) for Men Who Hate Women (Män som hatar kvinnor), the first film from Stieg Larsson's Millennium trilogy directed by Niels Arden Oplev. Michael Nyqvist and Noomi Rapace will star in the Søren Stærmose production for Yellow Bird Entertainment.
Two films will each get $0.2m (Euros 0.1m), Dome Karukoski's Forbidden Fruit (Förbjuden frukt), a Finnish-Swedish co-production from Aleksi Bardi-Helsinki Filmi and Martin Persson-Anagram Production, about two 18-year-old girls in a small religious community, and Save Us from Evil (Fri os fra det onde), a Danish-Swedish co-production from Michael Obel-Thura Film and Hans Lönnerheden-Greta Film directed by Ole Bornedal, and described as 'an everyday in Hell 2008.'
The institute will also contribute $0.3m (Euros 0.2m) to Laban-The Little Ghost (Lilla spöket Laban), a fully-animated children's feature by Lasse Persson, Karin Nilsson, Per Åhlin and Alicia Jaworski, which Lars Blomgren will produce for FilmLance Inernational, and $0.2m (Euros 0.1m) for Norwegian director Margreth Olin's Angel (Engelen), a Norwegian-Swedish-Finnish co-production, which will be realised by Thomas Robsahm for Speranza Film. Migma Film is Swedish co-producer.