Film Väst has announced the adaptation to the screen of Vilhelm Moberg’s epic drama THE EMIGRANTS at the annual press conference in Cannes. The film will be directed by world renowned Daniél Espinosa.

Vilhelm Moberg’s novel The Emigrants from 1949 will be filmed again predominantly in the Film Väst region and directed by Daniél Espinosa, known for films like Child 44 (2015), Safe House (2012) and Easy Money (2010) among others.

Director Jan Troell made a multi-award winning adaptation of the novel in 1971.

It’s humbling to follow in Jan Troell’s footsteps and I would not have embarked on this journey had it not been for the alarming topicality of Vilhelm Moberg’s novel, given the refugee situation at the Mediterranean Sea today. Then as now, someone makes a decision trying to give their children a better life. Someone decides not to accept the fate they were given. Yet another one defies famine, religious fundamentalism and an authoritarian regime that surrounds them. So they collect their loved ones for a trip that could cost them everything. The character Kristina shines with her very own strength. A woman and mother, in trying to save her children, puts everything at risk, says Daniél Espinosa.

THE EMIGRANTS is produced by Fredrik Wikström Nicastro, Tre Vänner Produktion and Svensk Filmindustri in co-production with Film Väst. The film is Fredrik Wikström Nicastro and Daniel Espinosa’s second collaboration after the box office success Easy Money.

It’s a big responsibility to film one of Sweden’s most beloved and immortal works. Therefore it is reassuring to once again work with Daniel Espinosa, who after our recent collaboration with Easy Money, has become one of the world’s most celebrated directors. The Emigrants is a project that I have dreamed about realizing for many years and I am extremely pleased that we now begin this journey, says Fredrik Wikström Nicastro.

Vilhelm Moberg wrote The Emigrants 1949 in the picturesque pacific town of Carmel in California following a long research trip in the US. The success of the novel was immediate, whereafter he wrote the three other parts of the story in what came to be known as The Emigrant-series, comprising the novels Unto a good land (1952), The Settlers (1956) and The last letter home (1959). Also the novel A time on Earth in 1963 can be considered as part of the series, narrated by an aging emigrant revisiting his life over his last days on a beach on the Pacific Ocean.

Previously, Jan Troell filmed Vilhelm Moberg’s The Emigrants-series in his multi-award winning The Emigrants (1971) and The New Land (1972).

The screenplay will be written by Petter Skavlan, known for Oscar-nominated Kon-Tiki (2012). Intended Production Designer is Niels Sejer who received numerous awards for A Royal Affair (2012) along with films like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009) and the TV series The Bridge (2011) to name a few.

We welcome the filming of The Emigrants to Västra Götaland that has grown to become one of Europe’s top film regions. The Emigrants is a big commitment with great potential to highlight Swedish film internationally, says Tomas Eskilsson, CEO of Film Väst.

Shooting is scheduled to start in 2017 in the Film Väst region. Expected Swedish premiere in 2018.

For interview requests and more information, please contact Camilla Nasiell, 070 763 97 66,

Photos: Erik Dalström