10 Things You Didn't Know... - July 3, 2016

10 Things You Didn't Know About... Wallander
by Tom
Tom
by Tom hmv London, Bio hmv.com Editor. Peanut butter, punk rock and pillows.

10 Things You Didn't Know About... Wallander

After four series and 12 wonderfully bleak episodes Wallander has come to and the final season comes to DVD shelves on Monday (July 4th).

Starring Kenneth Branagh as the brooding, but brilliant Swedish detective Kurt Wallander, the show follows him as he battles personal demons and gruesome cases against the backdrop of the charming town of Ystad.

To celebrate the release we’ve put together 10 facts you probably didn’t know about Sweden’s most famous detective...

 

Kenneth Branagh is the third actor to play the detective…

The British thesp follows Rolf Lassgård and Krister Henriksson, who have both played the role in Swedish language versions of the detective.

 

But he wasn’t one of the first names considered…

In the two years of development before the show got its commission from the BBC, lots of actors were sought and spoken to, but Branagh wasn’t one of them. Trevor Eve, Neil Pearson, Jason Isaacs, David Morrissey, Clive Owen and Michael Gambon were all linked with the role, but after Branagh personally approached Mankell at a film festival and asked about the role he became the frontrunner.

 

Producers had to find a new crew because of another Wallander…

For the first season the show’s producers had used a crew largely made up of Swedes, but they had a problem during filming on the second series. Ironically, as it turned out the Swedish language version of Wallander was also filming and had booked most of the crew, this meant that production Yellow Bird were forced to hire a mostly British crew to get the job done.

 

The series gave Swedish tourism a serious boost…

In the years after the show’s broadcast interest in Ystad has shot up, there are even local Wallander walking tours now...

 

But the show frequently gets out of Ystad...

The show largely stays in Sweden and the tiny town of Ystad, but it does bust out occasionally. In the third season we headed to Riga in Latvia and in the fourth run we find Wallander in South Africa.



It’s done very well at the BAFTAs…

The show has netted six in all, it won Best Drama in 2009, beating off competition from Doctor Who, Shameless and Spooks and also won four technical awards. In the following year Branagh was also victorious in the Best Actor category.

 

It got Tom Hiddleston his big break…

Hiddleston was just a jobbing TV actor when he was cast alongside Branagh in Wallander as Magnus Martinsson, one of the junior detectives. When Branagh got the gig as director of Thor he invited Hiddleston to audition, firstly he went for Thor and lost out to Chris Hemsworth, but Branagh liked him so much he convinced Marvel he’d be a great Loki despite being a relative unknown at the time. Hiddleston has done okay since then...

 

There’s a one-off appearance from a young Nicholas Hoult…

Back in 2008 Hoult was fresh out of Skins and working his way up. He makes a brief, but telling appearance in the show’s first episode Sidetracked.

 

And Rebecca Ferguson…

In the very same episode the future star of Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation and The Girl On The Train has another brief role.

 

It’s billed as the final series, but Kenneth Branagh hasn’t ruled out a return…

Speaking ahead of the final series, the actor said:  "I somehow didn't feel like it was going to be the last time. But that's just me talking – maybe it's just ridiculous Irish sentimentalism, I don't know.” We shall see...


To check out the complete Wallander back catalogue in hmv’s online store, click here.

Wallander: Series 4 - The Final Chapter
Wallander: Series 4 - The Final Chapter Kenneth Branagh

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