Bj&örk has joined the cast of Robert Eggers’ upcoming The Northman. This is the Icelandic musician/actress’ first movie role since 2005’s experimental art film Drawing Restraint 9. Bj&örk will star in Eggers’ upcoming project, which takes place in the 10th century, alongside Nicole Kidman, Alexander Skarsgard, Willem Dafoe, Anya Taylor-Joy, and Ethan Hawke. The movie has been described as a historical Viking revenge movie and Bj&örk will be playing a witch in it. Skarsgard plays a Nordic prince who seeks revenge after his father is murdered. No other details about the movie have been revealed at this time.
The public health crisis delayed The Northman production for a few months, but filming recently started near the eastern coast of Ireland. The set resembles a historical old Viking village in Iceland. Robert Eggers co-wrote the movie with the Icelandic poet Sj&ón, who is a longtime Bj&örk collaborator, going back to her days in the Sugarcubes. Sj&ón has contributed lyrics to Bj&örk’s “J&óga,” “Cosmogony,” “Oceania,” and many more. For now, The Northman does not have an official release date, but as long as the production runs smooth, Eggers fans shouldn’t have to wait too much longer. In addition to the casting news, set photos have leaked online, a few of which tease some Viking action.
Robert Eggers earned praise for his 2015 movie The Witch, which also starred Anya Taylor-Joy. Last year’s The Lighthouse was included in many best of the year lists and it earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Cinematography, though many felt is should have had more recognition, especially for the performances of Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe. With that being said, expectations are extremely high for The Northman.
Bj&örk’s movie career started back in 2000 with Lars von Trier’s Dancer in the Dark. She won Best Actress at Cannes that same year, while the soundtrack received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song, which was performed at the 2001 Oscars ceremony. The aforementioned song, “I’ve Seen It All,” is a duet with Radiohead front man Thom Yorke, who did not perform the song at the awards ceremony. This is the same year that Bj&örk wore the now-famous swan dress on the red carpet, which turned a lot of heads. As for acting again after Dancer in the Dark, the musician/actress was intent to never do it again.
Dancer in the Dark is a rather intense movie and it was emotionally taxing on Bj&örk. In 2017, the singer accused director Lars von Trier of sexual harassment on the set, which he denied. She called him, “the difficult one” and claims that he “punished” her after she repeatedly turned down his sexual advances and inappropriate behavior on set. Bj&örk went on to say, “After each take the director ran up to me and wrapped his arms around me for a long time in front of all crew or alone and stroked me sometimes for minutes against my wishes.” She continued, “While filming in Sweden, he threatened to climb from his room&´s balcony over to mine in the middle of the night with a clear sexual intention, while his wife was in the room next door.” She never mentioned von Trier by name. Deadline was the first to report on Bj&örk joining the cast of Robert Eggers’ The Northman.