Tobias Menzies, who won last year’s primetime Emmy Award for his turn as Prince Philip in ‘The Crown,’ has joined the cast of “Made in Oslo,” a character-driven thriller series set at a fertility clinic in Norway.
Menzies stars in the cinematic show opposite Pia Tjelta, one of Norway’s most successful actors whose credits include successful shows such as “Norsemen” and “Lykkeland.”
Created and penned by Kathrine Valen Zeiner (“Wisting,” “Valkyrien”), the eight-part show is a NENT/Viaplay Original and is produced by Tordenfilm. It will premiere on Viaplay on April 24.
“Made in Oslo” is directed by Marit Moum Aune, whose credits includes “Angels in America – National Theatre” and “Oslo.”
In “Made in Oslo,” Tjelta plays Elin, a passionate doctor who runs a fertility clinic and becomes obsessed with her mission to help couples have children, leading her to break rules, cross boundaries and put her relationship with loved ones in jeopardy.
Menzies stars as a successful British businessman who runs the first fertility clinic in the U.S. and plans to conquer the industry while implementing the potential of A.I. in both treatment and technology. He comes to Norway with the goal of acquiring Elin’s leading clinic, Bien, but faces her resistance.
The BAFTA-nominated British actor, who also starred in “Outlander” and “Game of Thrones,” had never starred in a Scandinavian series before. He told Variety that he got on board after meeting Tjelta in London and seeing her in a play called “The Lady From the Sea” which was directed by Moum Aune, the helmer of “Made in Oslo.” “We got to know each other and we were looking for material that we could work on together, and this came along,” said Menzies.
“What attracted me to the material was that it’s morally complex. It doesn’t try to simplify the industry and there’s a lot of kind of very relatable human dilemma within it,” said the actor, adding that Valen Zeiner’s writing weaves the “personal and the political.”
The other aspect that appealed to Menzies is the theme of the series. “I haven’t seen a show about setting this industry before, so I think that could be quite refreshing — there’s obviously so much material made now, so much TV in the world that finding areas that haven’t really been dramatized is quite hard, and I think (Valen Zeiner) has stumbled on one here,” said Menzies.
Tjelta said the show was compelling and universal because it explores how human beings can balance out the possibilities offered by technological advances with our instincts and pulsions. The Norwegian actor also revealed that the series is not exclusively set at the clinic as the story also revolves around the main characters’ family lives and is shot across various locations of Oslo, including at the Opera House where Moum Aune has a special access.
In terms of visual style, “Made in Oslo” is expected to look like a film rather than a traditional TV show as it will boast “a lot of handheld camera and long takes,” as well as a polished cinematography, Tjelta explained.
The cast is completed by Jakob Cedergren, Ola G. Furuseth, Mariann Hole, Sara Khorami, Ane Skumsvoll, Erle Østraat, among others.
“Made in Oslo” is produced by Nina B. A. Figenschow (“Valkyrien”), Ingunn Sundelin (“Dome 16”), and executive produced by Eric Vogel (“Dome 16”) at Tordenfilm, and Tanya Nanette Badendyck. Arild Karlsen is co-producing at Storyline.
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