Nicolas Winding Refn has started the Scotland-based shoot for his next film, Valhalla Rising.

Alongside Mads Mikkelsen, the film will star Jamie Sives and Gary Lewis from Billy Elliot fame. The budget is about $7m.

The famed Danish director is taking with him the organic working method from his Pusher films shooting the movie in continuity.

The film has been in development for years but picked up pace when Nimbus Film entered the arena helping Winding Refn and his long time producer buddy Henrik Danstrup. The story is about a mute Viking (Mikkelsen) getting lost at sea on the journey from Scotland to Scandinavia and discovering the America in the process.

The producers of local hit Flame & Citron, Nimbus Film, are behind Valhalla Rising. The film is co-written by Norwegian writer Roy Jacobsen and director Nicolas Winding Refn. Co-producers are Glasgow based La Belle Allee and Karen Smyth. Wild Bunch is handling sales with pre-sales already concluded for France (Wild Side) and the UK (Vertigo). The Danish release is earmarked for April 2009.

Winding Refn recently completed another UK-based shoot, for Bronson, also to be distributed by Vertigo.