Henning Mankell On Why He Loves Kenneth Branagh As Wallander
A third series of Wallander begins on BBC1 tomorrow night. The Sweden set crime drama series really captures the essence of Henning Mankell’s increasingly popular novels. Mankell himself is currently in the UK on the promotional trail for the series and spoke to the Daily Telegraph about why he thinks Kenneth Branagh is ideal in the role and about the new Swedish mini-series about his late father-in-law Ingmar Bergman.
“I think they have purified the stories. A lot of silence, a lot of thinking, sometimes very little dialogue… Not just driving, talking, driving, talking, like Morse.” he says of the BBC version.
Mankell has nothing but praise for Branagh, who asked him for permission to play the role when they met at a Swedish film festival. He is pleased about his friend’s knighthood because it acknowledges Branagh’s place in the pantheon of the great British actors he admires. He ranks Branagh with Sir Alec Guinness for ability to convey emotion and thought while “listening into the silence”.
On top of his already prodigious output, Mankell has written a miniseries for Swedish television about his late father-in-law, Ingmar Bergman. The series, which will be filmed later this year, is not a pious memorial. Although Mankell created Wallander before he married Bergman’s daughter Eva, he sees similar flaws in the two men. “They both refuse to compromise over their work and they both let their families pay the price.”
Wallander begins on 8 July on BBC1 at 9.00pm and consists of three feature length episodes.
Source: The Daily Telegraph