– Based on Ingvild Rishøi’s best-selling book, the heart-warming feature stars Anna Drakopoulou Sverrirdottir, Luiza Idrizi and Bartek Kaminski in the leading roles
l-r: Anna Drakopoulou Sverrirdottir, Luiza Idrizi, Bartek Kaminski and Suheib Ahmed on the set of Stargate – A Christmas Story (© Motlys)
On 8 February, Ida Sagmo Tvedte’s family flick Stargate – A Christmas Story is set to commence principal photography. The feature is based on Ingvild Rishøi’s acclaimed, best-selling book of the same name, published in 2021. It was launched in Norway, Denmark and Sweden, and later sold to 15 countries, including France, Germany, Spain and the USA. Rishøi is also co-writing the script for the movie.
Previously, Sagmo Tvedte helmed the award-winning series Sara (2008), Mia (2010) and Jenter (2013). The director’s first feature promises to be “a heart-warming Christmas adventure” revolving around a father and his two daughters, 16-year-old Melissa and ten-year-old Ronja. The two sisters are played by Anna Drakopoulou Sverrirdottir and Luiza Idrizi, respectively, whilst their father is portrayed by Bartek Kaminski (The Ambassador, Norsemen).
The story begins in December. Christmas is approaching, and Ronja is on her way home from school. In her hand, she has a piece of paper with a phone number that she thinks can make Christmas good this year. Ronja lives in Tøyen, Oslo, with her father and older sister Melissa, but in the run-up to Christmas, Dad is out of work, again. When Ronja helps him get a job as a Christmas tree seller in the market square, his luck seems to have turned. Suddenly, the fridge is fully stocked and their loving dad smells like fir needles instead of beer. But as soon as he gets money in his hands, the temptations lurking in the local Stargate pub become too great. And once again, the girls are forced to fend for themselves. Ronja is a dreamer, like her father, and uses her vivid imagination as both a shield and an escape. Most of all, she fantasises about living with her sister in a cabin deep in the forest.
The main cast is rounded off by Staffan Göthe (A Royal Secret, A Serious Game [+see also:
interview: Karin Franz Körlof
film profile]), Tevje Espeland (Hybris [+see also:
film profile], Elevrådet), Damir Babovic (In Order of Disappearance [+see also:
interview: Hans Petter Moland
film profile], Home Ground), Suheib Ahmed (10 Years), Ingvild Holthe Bygdnes (Luka and the Magical Theater, Monster), Hamza Kader (22 July [+see also:
film profile], Tilt), Shana Mathai (Power Play [+see also:
series profile]) and Jan Gunnar Røise (Power Play).
“Stargate – A Christmas Story will be a warm Christmas film, which with both humour and a hint of adventure will initiate useful conversations about a theme that needs to be made visible. The novel has complex characters that I fell in love with, and it was wonderful collaborating with Ingvild when writing the script. I’m now really looking forward to starting shooting. We have a team of both experienced actors and new talents, and in Luiza Idrizi we have found our strong-willed and imaginative Ronja,” commented Sagmo Tvedte.
Stargate – A Christmas Story is being produced by Norway’s Motlys, with Hege Hauff Hvattum serving as the producer and Yngve Sæther as the executive producer. The project has received support from the Norwegian Film Institute, the Nordisk Film & TV Fond and the Oslo Filmfond. SF Studios is in charge of its Nordic distribution, whilst REinvent is handling its international sales. The picture will be released in Norwegian theatres on 25 December 2025.