Viaplay joins Netflix & TV2 Play in halting Danish drama productions

Filippa Wallestam

Nordic streamer Viaplay is to halt development and production of Danish scripted content, following similar action by Netflix and local pay-TV service TV2 Play.

Viaplay announced the decision in an open letter to the Producentforeningen and Create Danmark unions, which represent producers, writers and other film industry workers.

It comes after the two Danish unions reached a rights agreement in January that was intended to ensure that filmmakers and screenwriters receive a greater share of the profits if a series or film performs well.

“Until we have reached a sustainable agreement, we cannot see any immediate alternative than putting further production of Danish fiction projects on hold,” wrote Viaplay chief content officer Filippa Wallestam in the statement.

“In the long term, we hope we can find a viable way so that we can again produce fiction in Denmark and thereby achieve our ambitious goal of becoming the leading provider of Danish-produced films and series.”

Wallestam added that Denmark risked becoming “a low priority market in relation to investments in local content” as a result of the rights agreement, combined with a recently introduced government policy requiring streamers to pay six percent of their profit generated in the country as a “cultural contribution” to support Danish TV production

Both Netflix and TV2 Play have already halted production of Danish drama content as a result of the rights agreement, which runs for two years. Both firms said it had become too expensive to produce in Denmark.

Netflix productions in Denmark include The Chestnut Man, The Rain and the latest season of Borgen.

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