Department Q

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Department Q
Cover of Department Q Trilogy Dvd
Directed byMikkel Nørgaard [da; no] (1–2)
Hans Petter Moland (3)
Christoffer Boe (4)
Martin Zandvliet (5)
Ole Christian Madsen (6)
Screenplay byNikolaj Arcel (1–4)
Rasmus Heisterberg (2)
Bo Hr. Hansen [da] (4)
Mikkel Nørgaard [da; no] (4)
Anders August (5)
Thomas Porsager (5)
Jakob Weis (6)
Based onNovels
by Jussi Adler-Olsen
Produced byPeter Aalbæk Jensen (1–4)
Louise Vesth (1–4)
Mikael Rieks [da] (5–10)
StarringNikolaj Lie Kaas (1–4)
Ulrich Thomsen (5–10)
Fares Fares (1–4)
Zaki Youssef [da] (5)
Afshin Firouzi [da; no] (6-10)
Johanne Louise Schmidt (2–4)
Sofie Torp [da; fr; no] (5-10)
CinematographyEric Kress (1–2)
John Andreas Andersen (3)
Jacob Møller (4)
Aske Foss (5)
Jørgen Johansson [da] (6)
Production
companies
Zentropa (1–4)
Nordisk Film (5–10)
Distributed byNordisk Film
Release date
2013–2024
CountryDenmark
LanguagesDanish
English
Arabic
Swedish
Norwegian
French
Spanish
German
Romani
Czech
Budget€35,000,000[a]
Box officeDKK 287,210,000

Department Q (Danish: Afdeling Q) is a series of ten Danish Nordic noir crime novels by author Jussi Adler-Olsen[1] which have been adapted in an ongoing series of highly successful Danish films and a forthcoming English language TV adaptation for Netflix which changes the setting from Denmark to Scotland.

Novels[edit]

Originally written in Danish, the novels have been translated into numerous languages, including English, Bulgarian, Chinese, Croatian, Czech, Dutch, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Italian, Japanese, Latvian, Lithuanian, Macedonian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Slovakian, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish and Vietnamese.[2]

Despite using the same translations, the Penguin Group titled the first five novels differently in the UK and the USA. Their editions use the same English titles as the film adaptations.

Novel Original title Year Film adaptation Year
Mercy [da; de] Kvinden i buret 2007
2011 (USA & UK)
The Keeper of Lost Causes 2013
Disgrace [da; de] Fasandræberne 2008
2012 (USA & UK)
The Absent One 2014
Redemption [da; de] Flaskepost fra P 2009
2013 (USA & UK)
A Conspiracy of Faith 2016
Guilty [da; de] Journal 64 2010
2013 (USA)
2014 (UK)
The Purity of Vengeance [da; ca; cy; de; es; fa; fr; it; ko; no; sv] 2018
Buried [da] Marco Effekten 2012
2014 (USA & UK)
The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv][3] 2021
The Hanging Girl [da] Den Grænseløse 2014
2015 (USA & UK)
Boundless [da; sv][4][5] 2024
The Scarred Woman [da] Selfies 2016
2017 (USA & UK)
Victim 2117 [da] Offer 2117 2019
2020 (USA & UK)
The Shadow Murders [da] Natrium Chlorid 2021
2022 (USA & UK)
Locked In Syv m2 med Lås 2021
2022 (USA & UK)

Adaptations[edit]

Films[edit]

Upcoming[6][7]

The first four films were produced by Peter Aalbæk Jensen and Louise Vesth through Zentropa, however despite their commercial and critical success, author Jussi Adler-Olsen was unhappy with the results and the casting, feeling that the films and characters departed from his novels too much and that his suggestions were being ignored, leading to Nordisk Film (who had already distributed the prior films in Denmark) and producer Mikael Rieks [da] taking over for the remainder of the series, with all the recurring roles recast.[8]

English language TV series[edit]

In April 2023, it was announced that an English-language adaptation of the successful Danish crime series of books would be adapted for the streaming service Netflix by filmmaker Scott Frank.[9] Frank first acquired the US television rights for the novels in 2014 and initially planned to set the series in Boston, Massachusetts instead of Sweden. The eight-part series is being produced by Left Bank Pictures and Sony Pictures Television with the setting finally being Scotland and filming taking place in Edinburgh.[10] Frank is showrunner and is directing the first two episodes. He also co-wrote the series alongside Chandni Lakhani, Stephen Greenhorn and Colette Kane.[11]

Filming began in Edinburgh in February 2024, with Matthew Goode in the lead role of Carl Morck, Alexej Manvelov [sv; de; fr; nl; zh] as Akram Salim (renamed from Hafez el-Assad), Leah Byrne as Rose, Chloe Pirrie as Merrit Lingard (renamed from Merete Lynggaard) and Kelly Macdonald as Dr. Rachel Irving.[12] Later that month, Mark Bonnar, Jamie Sives, Shirley Henderson and Kate Dickie were also confirmed to be cast.[13]

Cast and characters[edit]

Character The Keeper of Lost Causes
(2013)
The Absent One
(2014)
A Conspiracy of Faith
(2016)
The Purity of Vengeance [da; ca; cy; de; es; fa; fr; it; ko; no; sv]
(2018)
The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv]
(2021)
Boundless [da; sv]
(2024)
The Scarred Woman
(2026)
Victim 2117
(2028)
The Shadow Murders
(2030)
Locked In
(2032)
English language Netflix series
(2025)
Carl Mørck Nikolaj Lie Kaas Ulrich Thomsen Matthew Goode
Hafez el-Assad[b] Fares Fares Zaki Youssef [da] Afshin Firouzi [da; no] Alexej Manvelov [sv; de; fr; nl; zh]
Rose Knudsen Johanne Louise Schmidt Sofie Torp [da; fr; no] Leah Byrne
Gordon Mads Reuther [da] TBA
Marcus Jacobsen Søren Pilmark Henrik Noél [da] TBA
Hardy Henningsen Troels Lyby Thomas W. Gabrielsson TBA
Mona Lisa Carlehed [sv; da] TBA
Merete Lynggaard[c] Sonja Richter Chloe Pirrie

Zaki Youssef [da] was unable to return as Assad after The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv] due to having recently become a father and having other scheduling conflicts with the filming of Boundless [da; sv], which started on 5 September 2022, half a year earlier than planned.[14]

Crew[edit]

Film The Keeper of Lost Causes
(2013)
The Absent One
(2014)
A Conspiracy of Faith
(2016)
The Purity of Vengeance [da; ca; cy; de; es; fa; fr; it; ko; no; sv]
(2018)
The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv]
(2021)
Boundless [da; sv]
(2024)
Director Mikkel Nørgaard [da; no] Hans Petter Moland Christoffer Boe Martin Zandvliet Ole Christian Madsen
Producer(s) Peter Aalbæk Jensen
Louise Vesth
Mikael Rieks [da] Mikael Rieks [da]
Malene Blenkov
Screenwriter(s) Nikolaj Arcel Nikolaj Arcel
Rasmus Heisterberg
Nikolaj Arcel Nikolaj Arcel
Bo Hr. Hansen [da]
Mikkel Nørgaard [da; no]
Anders August
Thomas Porsager
Jakob Weis
Composer(s) Patrik Andrén
Uno Helmersson
Johan Söderqvist
Nicklas Schmidt [da; de] Mikkel Maltha
Anthony Lledo
Sune Martin Jonas Struck [da; de]
Lasse Ziegler
Cinematographer Eric Kress John Andreas Andersen Jacob Møller Aske Foss Jørgen Johansson [da]
Editor(s) Morten Egholm
Martin Schade
Olivier Bugge Coutté [no]
Nicolaj Monberg
Janus Billeskov Jansen [da; ar; arz; de; fr; sv]
My Thordal
Per K. Kirkegaard
Per Sandholt
Frederik Strunk
Nicolaj Monberg
Production company Zentropa Nordisk Film
Distribution Nordisk Film
Runtime 96 minutes 119 minutes 112 minutes 119 minutes 125 minutes 126 minutes
Release date October 3, 2013 October 2, 2014 March 3, 2016 October 4, 2018 May 27, 2021 February 1, 2024

Reception[edit]

Box office performance[edit]

Film Release date Box office gross (Denmark) Attendance (Denmark) Box office ranking (Danish films) Budget
The Keeper of Lost Causes October 3, 2013 DKK 59,010,000[15] 721,256[16] #5[15] €5,000,000[17]
The Absent One October 2, 2014 DKK 68,100,000[15] 764,002[18] #2[15] €5,200,000[19]
A Conspiracy of Faith March 3, 2016 DKK 64,300,000[15] 704,971[20] #4[15] €5,300,000[21]
The Purity of Vengeance [da; ca; cy; de; es; fa; fr; it; ko; no; sv] October 4, 2018 DKK 72,500,000[15] 765,111[22] #1[15] €5,200,000[23]
The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv] May 27, 2021 DKK 23,300,000[24] 225,243[25] N/A €7,400,000[26]
Boundless [da; sv] February 1, 2024 TBA 301,800[27] TBA €6,900,000[5]
Total DKK 287,210,000 3,482,383 €35,000,000
Average DKK 57,442,000 580,397 €5,830,000

The films have been massively successful, selling over three million tickets in Denmark alone, where the installments regularly top the yearly box-office. The Purity of Vengeance [da; ca; cy; de; es; fa; fr; it; ko; no; sv] (2018) became the highest grossing Danish film of all time upon release,[28] with a gross of 72,500,000 DKK, The Absent One (2014) the second highest with 68,1 M. DKK, A Conspiracy of Faith (2016) the fourth with 64,3 M. DKK, and The Keeper of Lost Causes (2012) the fifth with 59,01 M. DKK. The Purity of Vengeance is additionally the 11th overall highest grossing film in Denmark.[15] The fifth film The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv] however, which marked a complete recast, was significantly less successful despite a larger budget. The sixth film, Boundless [da; sv], had the best opening for a Danish film since Checkered Ninja 2 in 2021, three years prior,[29] and is currently the most watched film of 2024 in Danish cinemas.[27]

Critical response[edit]

Film Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic Kino.dk
The Keeper of Lost Causes 71% (28 reviews)[30] 62 (8 reviews)[31] 4.2/6 (7 reviews)[32]
The Absent One 92% (12 reviews)[33] 61 (6 reviews)[34] 3.5/6 (7 reviews)[35]
A Conspiracy of Faith 100% (6 reviews)[36] 75 (3 reviews)[37] 3.7/6 (7 reviews)[38]
The Purity of Vengeance [da; ca; cy; de; es; fa; fr; it; ko; no; sv] 66% (3 reviews)[39] N/A 4/6 (7 reviews)[40]
The Marco Effect [da; ca; cy; de; fr; sv] N/A N/A 3.5/6 (8 reviews)[41]
Boundless [da; sv] N/A N/A 4/6 (7 reviews)[42]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Combined budget of the six films
  2. ^ Renamed Akram Salim in the Netflix series
  3. ^ Renamed Merrit Lingard in the Netflix series

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Department Q books in order". deadgoodbooks.co.uk. 15 July 2019. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  2. ^ "The Keeper of Lost Causes > Editions". Goodreads.
  3. ^ "Il film New Department Q The Marco Effect in pre-produzione". cineuropa.org. 6 June 2019. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  4. ^ a b Pham, Annika (26 August 2022). "TrustNordisk Boards New Department Q Film 'Boundless' by 'Banshee' Helmer (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety.
  5. ^ a b c Abbatescianni, Davide (22 September 2022). "Ole Christian Madsen's crime-thriller Boundless in production". Cineuropa.
  6. ^ Bentien, Daniel. "Eksklusivt: Her Er Premieredatoerne For De 4 Nye Afdeling Q-Film" (in Danish). Kino.dk.
  7. ^ Teglgaard, Stine. "Bekræftet: 6 Film På Vej Med Jussi Adler-Olsens 'Afdeling Q'" (in Danish). Kino.dk.
  8. ^ Hartvig Nielsen, Daniel. "Derfor Blev Carl Mørck Skiftet Ud Til 'Marco Effekten'" (in Danish). Kino.dk.
  9. ^ Hamilton, Ben (27 April 2023). "Wee jauntie for Jussi: Netflix to set 'Department Q' TV series in Scotland". cphost.dk. Retrieved 7 November 2023.
  10. ^ "Netflix to film Scandi Noir Department Q in Edinburgh". Herald Scotland. 27 April 2023. Retrieved 7 November 2023.
  11. ^ Clarke, Stewart (6 February 2024). "'Department Q' Takes Shape: Matthew Goode, Chloe Pirrie, Alexej Manvelov, Leah Byrne, Kelly Macdonald Join Netflix Series Adaptation Of Danish Crime Novels". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  12. ^ O'Rourke, Ryan (6 February 2024). "Matthew Goode Leads Netflix's Gritty New Crime Drama 'Department Q'". Collider. Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  13. ^ Cormack, Morgan (6 February 2024). "Line of Duty and Discovery of Witches stars lead Netflix's Department Q". Radio Times. Retrieved 7 February 2024.
  14. ^ Ludvigsen, Jacob (15 September 2022). "Castet til ny Afdeling Q-film offentliggjort - Zaki Youssef skiftet ud som Assad" (in Danish). Soundvenue.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Zentropa Crime-Thriller 'The Purity Of Vengeance' Breaks Danish Box Office Record". Deadline Hollywood. 22 November 2018.
  16. ^ "Nordic Admissions 2013-Part 1: Denmark-Finland". Nordisk Film & TV Fond. 24 January 2014.
  17. ^ "The Keeper of Lost Causes". TrustNordisk.
  18. ^ "Nordic Admissions 2014 Part 2: Denmark-Iceland-Sweden". Nordisk Film & TV Fond. 30 January 2015.
  19. ^ "The Absent One". TrustNordisk.
  20. ^ "Attendance for Danish films drops 33.3% in 2016". Nordisk Film & TV Fond. 23 January 2017.
  21. ^ "A Conspiracy of Faith". TrustNordisk.
  22. ^ "Denmark 2018 Annual Admissions Charts" (PDF). Nordisk Film & TV Fond. 22 January 2019.
  23. ^ "The Purity of Vengeance". TrustNordisk.
  24. ^ Pham, Annika (6 February 2022). "Nordic Box Office in 2021: 'No Time to Die" Keeps Screens Alive". Variety.
  25. ^ "Denmark 2021 Annual Admissions Charts" (PDF). Nordisk Film & TV Fond. 14 February 2021.
  26. ^ "The Marco Effect". TrustNordisk.
  27. ^ a b Martin Kofoed Hansen (3 April 2024). "Påskeferien i biografen" (in Danish). Danish Film Institute.
  28. ^ "I film danesi dominano il box office locale 2018". cineuropa.org. 19 December 2018. Retrieved 29 December 2019.
  29. ^ Hartvig, Daniel (5 February 2024). "Ny Afdeling Q-film får bedste biografåbning for en dansk film i flere år!" (in Danish). Kino.dk.
  30. ^ "The Keeper of Lost Causes". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media.
  31. ^ "Department Q: The Keeper of Lost Causes". Metacritic. CBS Interactive.
  32. ^ "Kvinden i Buret". Kino.dk.
  33. ^ "The Absent One". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media.
  34. ^ "Department Q: The Absent One". Metacritic. CBS Interactive.
  35. ^ "Kvinden i Buret". Kino.dk.
  36. ^ "A Conspiracy of Faith". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media.
  37. ^ "Department Q: A Conspiracy of Faith". Metacritic. CBS Interactive.
  38. ^ "Flaskepost Fra P". Kino.dk.
  39. ^ "The Purity of Vengeance". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media.
  40. ^ "Journal 64". Kino.dk.
  41. ^ "Marco Effekten". Kino.dk.
  42. ^ "Den Grænseløse". Kino.dk.