Magazine article Screen International

Viva Hate Debuts at Way out West

Magazine article Screen International

Viva Hate Debuts at Way out West

Article excerpt

Three-part TV rock series is named after Morrissey's debut solo album.

Director Jens Lien dreamt of being a rock-and-roll star when growing up in Oslo in the 1980s. Instead he became a filmmaker. Not a bad second choice, particularly considering his award-winning resume includes Bothersome Man and Sons of Norway.

Taking a departure from film, the Norwegian director has most recently linked up with ex Swedish rocker Peter Birro for the three-part TV series titled Viva Hate (named after Morrissey's debut solo album). The hour-long episodes work as an extended feature that is set in Gothenburg's 90s music scene.

"When I read Peter's script - I thought, 'Wow, this really captures what it was like at that time.' Music was everything, and in and amongst that was finding acceptance, love and your identity," said Lien.

This past week at Gothenburg's Way Out West Festival, he and Birro screened a work-in-progress of the first episode.

The head of film programming, Svante Tidholm, confessed it is not something the festival normally does, but since the material is so closely tied to the festival's spirit, it was a natural submission.

The sold-out event reassured the filmmakers that music and film fans of all ages could relate with the characters and music from the period. English bands including The Cure, Morrissey, The Cult and The Clash are played throughout, and are referenced on a deeper level in terms of cultivating relationships.

"A serious conflict arises for the main character (whose God is Morrissey) when he meets a girl that is a Cure fan - those two worlds didn't collide at that time," insists Lien. …

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