Nikolaj Coster-Waldau is a good distance from Westeros. The Danish actor, whose two-time Emmy-nominated function as Jamie Lannister in Recreation of Thrones made him a worldwide star, is spending the week on the sunny Mediterranean, watching the worldwide collection that would turn out to be the following Recreation of Thrones.
Coster-Waldau heads the jury of the 2021 CanneSeries worldwide tv pageant. Collectively together with his fellow jurors — Israeli screenwriter Sigal Avin, French actor Naidra Ayadi, Italian actor Salvatore Esposito and French DJ Marco Prince — he’ll decide the winners of this yr’s competitors. Its lineup is eclectic and cosmopolitan, operating the gambit from Israeli dramas Unhappy Metropolis Women and Unknowns, to Russian thriller collection Desires of Alice, to French spy drama Totems and Norwegian culture-clash comedy Countrymen.
Forward of the jury’s announcement, Coster-Waldau spoke, by way of Zoom, with The Hollywood Reporter‘s European Bureau Chief Scott Roxborough on “devouring” newest TV hit Squid Recreation, how world streaming has introduced the world nearer collectively and what he thinks of upcoming Recreation of Thrones prequel Home of Dragons.
You had been on a present that was essentially the most publicly mentioned and debated present on the planet. What’s it like so that you can be on the opposite aspect of that and to have the ability to truly be judging different individuals’s work?
Nicely, it’s very attention-grabbing and it’s been numerous enjoyable. After they requested me, I truly mentioned sure in a short time as a result of I feel it’s an attention-grabbing time [in international television]. While you used to speak about internationally profitable exhibits, exhibits that had a worldwide attain, you’d virtually at all times completely be speaking about an American present or an English-speaking present as a result of the knowledge was that these exhibits had been the one ones that individuals wished to observe.
Then got here streaming and it was met, I feel, with numerous trepidation and worry about what streaming was going to do to creativity. What was it going to do to the tales which are being advised? Are we going to have much less selection, much less range? It’s been attention-grabbing to see that nearly the other has occurred. Now we see individuals weren’t watching exhibits from different components of the world, not as a result of they didn’t wish to, however simply because there was no entry. You couldn’t simply activate the TV and watch a present from Serbia or from Russia. Now it’s attainable.
I imply the truth that a South Korean tv present [Squid Game] is the largest present on the planet proper now – you wouldn’t have guessed that just some months in the past. … I used to be watching a Russian present right here in competitors the opposite day. I received’t say what I consider it, I used to be sitting there and caught myself pondering: “They’re going by the identical feeling with the identical sh** that all of us are coping with.” It’s apparent however we dwell in such a polarized world [and] there’s one thing about sitting and watching a present and realizing we’re all simply human beings, all of us, and whether or not we dwell in several international locations and completely different cultures, we’re essentially coping with the identical struggles and the identical hopes as everybody else.
Personally, what have been the current exhibits — not from CanneSeries competitors — that you’ve got obsessed over?
I feel the final present I used to be actually impressed with, that I used to be blown away by, was I Might Destroy You from Michaela Coel. I do know I used to be late to the social gathering on that one, however I used to be so impressed by it, on so many ranges. The truth that she took such a private, painful expertise and turned it into such an unbelievable present with such stunning performances and sharp writing. That’s the final one the place I actually was shocked and was impressed.
I additionally devoured Squid Recreation. There I used to be simply curious what the hell this “largest present on the planet” was. So I checked it out. I believed it was very properly made, and I believed it’s an attention-grabbing time we dwell in the place the largest present on the planet is about life and dying and raises fairly large questions in regards to the challenges we face globally, like excessive inequality.
What standards are you and your fellow CanneSeries jurors utilizing to evaluate the competitors?
We talked about this, after all. The jury and I, all of us agreed that we’ve got to go by the present we like the most effective. So the factors is what present blew us away, the entire package deal. The one the place if you watch you go: “it is a f**cking nice story. That is only a nice present.” As a result of it’s additionally vital for me that we keep away from enjoying to a sure aspect, to, for lack of a greater phrase, decide essentially the most politically right present. As a result of the most effective exhibits lie past that. So will probably be what will we like finest. However after all, we’ve got 5 individuals on the jury and style is a really particular person factor.
I’m contractually obliged now to ask you about Recreation of Thrones.
It’s attention-grabbing that that choice has been added to each contract for each journalist. However I feel it expires in 2022.
I don’t know in case you noticed HBO Max’s footage of the Recreation of Thrones prequel Home of the Dragon, which shall be popping out subsequent yr. However I used to be questioning, personally for you, since you might be achieved with the present, a present that had a lot impression worldwide, and on you personally, how does it really feel to see it coming again?
I noticed the teaser trailer that they got here out with and I used to be intrigued. I believed it was enjoyable to see Matt Smith in that world, in that lovely white wig. And pay attention, I’m curious as everybody [to see it].
However it’s a very completely different present. It’s its personal present. I simply hope it’s nice. I hope the success of Recreation of Thrones received’t get in the way in which for individuals after they expertise this new present. For us, it took some time for individuals to get into Recreation of Thrones. I keep in mind the primary season individuals had been saying: “they’re too many characters, I don’t know what’s happening!” I don’t assume they’ve the posh we had. They’ve to begin with the place we had been in like season 4 or 5, as a result of that’s what they are going to be in comparison with. However I actually hope that it’s a large hit for them.