'Lord of the Rings' producer wants to shoot Viking trilogy in Norway

Aug. 31, 2013 at 12:08 PM

OSLO, Norway, Aug. 31 (UPI) -- Producer Barrie Osbourne said he's lobbying Norway for financial incentives to shoot a $100 million Viking film trilogy there modeled after "Lord of the Rings."

Obsourne, who was the producer behind the "Lord of the Rings" and "Matrix" trilogies, said he wants to make a series of films about Harald Hardrada, the last great Viking king who died in an attempt to conquer England in 1066, TheLocal.no reported Friday.

"The movie will be about how Harald evolved from a teenager to a great leader who rallied his kingdom," Osbourne told Stavanger Aftenbladet. "There is so much to tell about Harald that it does not fit in one movie. We need to create a trilogy. It will have the same structure as 'Lord of the Rings,' where the hero travels through many countries and kingdoms."

Norway doesn't have a film incentive program, so Osbourne said the 20 percent of the budget he wants refunded from the government might have to come from its tourist budget.

"If you are going to get a big movie shot in a country, it is essential that the authorities in the country help," he said, adding that the film could impact tourism in Norway the same way "Lord of the Rings" did in New Zealand.

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