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Film Studies 101
Feature
The Killing: A Guide To Making A Crime Classic
The show's creator, Søren Sveistrup on the ingredients for his cult TV show

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The Killing: A Guide To Making A Crime Classic | 2. The Heroine
2. The Heroine

Sveistrup first worked with Sofie Gråbøl on comedy-drama Nikolaj And Julie (“It was quite good,” he says. “It was a bit like Cold Feet.”) and wanted the actress to play Sarah Lund, crime investigator extraordinaire, from the get-go. Known at that time for her comedy roles, Gråbøl was a tough sell to the broadcaster. “She had never done anything like this before”, says Sveistrup, “but because she’s such a good actress, I didn’t see any problem with it. “ It’s probably fair to say Lund is 50 per cent Sveistrup, 50 per cent Gråbøl.

“I like the genre and I lean very strongly toward the silent types. There were US shows where the heroine was talking about her private life, her kids and her family. I always got a little bit bored there. Sofie had the same issues and then we went, ‘Okay, let’s do a silent type, let’s do an awkward type.’ That suited me fine, as I didn’t have to focus on her private life. I can put pressure on her by other characters talking about her private life. The main role was that she was unable to talk about herself, her feelings and she avoided any kind of personal bond in her work. When you watch a movie with Clint Eastwood, he is usually very, very silent. He keeps to his thing. Normally he is only good at one thing like Sarah Lund is. Then other people are talking about him as a dinosaur. That seemed fun, to do that with a woman instead. That was a hybrid of Sofie’s thoughts and my thoughts.”

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