Things get off to a rocky start when I called Danish TV and film star Jacob Lohmann. One moment he is sitting comfortably ready for our phone interview, the next we are struggling with the sound, the other pandemic that seems to striking all of us in this virtual world, then all of a sudden…
Oh shit, sorry, I am almost fell down!
It seems that Jacob isn’t sitting so comfortably as his chair collapses on him.
I think my chair just fell apart Alex, I was so comfortable!
There is much laughter as he settles down ready for my first question about what he is currently filming.
What are you working on?
I am filming in Denmark, I am not sure whether I am allowed to talk about it but now I am – it is about 8 recovered cancer patients who can’t get their lives back together after overcoming cancer.
They are then forced by the different companies they work for to take a course to try and get back into the room when it comes to society and work again. It is a comedy drama sort of thing.
I play the selfish bastard whose only mission in life is to get women and he hates them deep down, he has a big problem with them so it is a fascinating character to play.
The series is being filmed in and around Copenhagen, so all on Jacob’s doorstep but he has been told that he might start a new project in Iceland.
Maybe I am going to Iceland after that, it is being worked on but it might be a false rumour, but maybe to go film a movie. Then there is a small part in a Danish movie that is being filmed on the Canary Islands for a period racial drama about Denmark and the West Indies.
It is so great to hear that Jacob is keeping busy again as, with most of the world, we have all had to pause during the pandemic.
There has been a drought for me, and many of us, with this whole Covid situation many of us have been stranded for some time. I did theatre, Hamlet, but that got cut off and there have been lots of projects that got postponed but are now happening at once. It is going to be a busy Summer!
It is such a weird situation with Covid, we keep thinking we are over it but we are not really.
He is so right, here we are talking in March 2021, practically a year on from when this whole nightmare started – but enough of that – let us focus on the good stuff!
We don’t dwell too long on the c-word but there have been aspects of it that have given us some positive experiences and advantages – one of those being the introduction of digital film festivals having the ability to get to watch a host of Danish movies at the recent Glasgow Film Festival one of which is Jacob’s movie Shorta.
The movie plays out as a thriller when two police officers (Jacob Lohmann and Simon Seers), on different sides of the spectrum when it comes to the whole good cop/bad cop theme, get stuck on the wrong side of town during a riot and have to mastermind their way out with a host of obstacles in their way – including each other.
I was intrigued to see how the movie came about for Jacob:
Well this is quite an unorthodox story because I hadn’t really realised I had got the part – I was the last to know I got the role basically. I had got a call to do this workshop with the directors and with Simon – it was a three day workshop in the directors car.
They were very particular that this is just a workshop – but for my part I consider the workshop very seriously and treat it like a job, its an opportunity to get better.
So then time goes by and I hear in the hallways people saying, “It is coming along really well and they might get greenlighted” but I never hear from the director Fredrik.
I was working on a show called Follow The Money and so Fredrik is working on the last three episodes of that series and he goes: “Congratulations on the movie” I was like what do you mean? So he went into a panic that I couldn’t do it, we were three months away from the shoot, but it worked out all okay.
It certainly did – Shorta was a personal highlight for me when watching the movie at Glasgow Film Festival – it was intense and totally absorbing leaving you almost exhausted afterwards.
It was a tough movie, a tough movie to shoot, I was completely busted afterward, I was tired and every little corner of my body was aching afterward but it was all worth it – a great pleasure. I have never in my life met such well-prepared directors!
And what a pairing the directors Frederik and Anders are – Shorta is their debut feature film and they have certainly set the bar high for themselves! They had shot the movie in a record six weeks and even had other set ups which they had filmed but didn’t make the cut. I wonder whether there might be plans for Jacob to work with them again the future?
We have nothing on paper but when you have relationship like that with somebody you just say on the last shooting day, we have to do this again, it was both sides felt that way (at least that what they told me) I choose to believe them. I would love work with them again.
I must admit I was a bit concerned before we started about how this was going to play out with it being two directors but it just worked – all of it – the cast all just clicked!
The movie has picked up a lot of nominations now in Denmark including a host of nominations for the Bodil awards (a Danish version of the Oscars) and also for the Robert Awards.
When the Dust Settles
When the Dust Settles is a series that has picked up a lot of praise over in the Nordic region and we are waiting patiently for its release here in the UK – and we are happy to confirm that it is due to arrive on Walter Presents this Autumn which is fantastic news!
The series follows the stories of eight people and how their lives are affected after being involved in a terrorist attack in a restaurant in Copenhagen. Rather than diving straight into the horrific event it builds up to it, allowing you to get fully immersed in the characters. One of which is Morten, played by Jacob.
I play a father to a son who works as a dish washer in the restaurant and he supposedly is at work when the attack hits. Our apartment is right by the restaurant and so I am the first guy on the scene when the tragedy hit.
It tells the story of the effects of the attack on a lot of random people and in my case I play the worried father with a troublesome teenage son who manages to avoid the attack and the mental repercussions of that.
What has Jacob been watching?
We are always interested to know what our Nordic friends are checking out – whilst in the UK we thrive on all the Nordic TV series and movies but it is always interesting to see what they might be checking out.
Lupin for me, that is on Netflix at the moment with Omar Sy, I was crazy about that show. But that is it for me – I have a one and half year old son – having kids just takes your life away from you when you are in the entertainment business!
I am a mad sports fan though so I watch a lot of those documentaries – there was the Michael Jordan one The Last Dance and tennis is one of my favourite sports so there is this new one about an Argentinian player who back in 1979 got cheated out being world number one. The documentaries that go back in time are great fun!
We wrap things up by talking about the high hopes Jacob has for getting to return to filming in Iceland (he had previously shot the Valhalla movie there) and other fantastic places – the future is looking brighter finally!
Shorta – released in cinemas and digital 3rd September
When the Dust Settles comes to Walter Presents from the 19th September
Interview by Alex Minnis