Jackson Rathbone, the teen heartthrob from "Twilight", has reportedly agreed to play Varg Vikernes (a.k.a. Count Grishnackh) — the former BURZUM mastermind who is currently serving a Norwegian prison term for the August 1993 murder of MAYHEM guitarist Oystein Aarseth (a.k.a. Euronymous) and setting fire to three churches — in the upcoming movie "Lords Of Chaos".
Based on Michael Moynihan and Didrik Soderlind's book of the same name, the film depicts true events and revolves around the black metal sub-culture that spawned a wave of murders and church arsons across Norway in the early 1990s.
Making his English-language debut with "Lords Of Chaos" will be hot Japanese director Sion Sono.
Stuart Pollok of Los Angeles-based Saltire Entertainment, Ko Mori of Eleven Arts and Oh Jungwan of Korea's Bom Productions are producing the film, which starts shooting in Norway in mid-September.
Three years ago, plans had been underway to make the book into a film. However, the producers lacked funding at the time.
Now, however, with funding underway, producer Pollok is in Cannes to promote the project.
Why did you choose to make this film?
"It is a fascinating topic, a great visual world to depict, and a fun portrayal of Norway," Pollok told Dagbladet.no. "Black metal is possibly the largest cultural export of Norway in the past twenty years."
In his manuscript to Norway's Hans Fjellestad, Pollok revealed that the film will be based on actual events.
It will be a story of youth and youthful energy, said Pollok, but he emphasised that the film will fall under the teen film category, and that it will be a psychological horror film.
The events that came to pass are interesting and fascinating, said Pollok.
Pollok confirmed to Dagbladet.no that he will also be casting Norwegian actors.
Svein Andresen of Film Camp, which is responsible for the Norwegian recording locations and production, stated "What happened has been widely known to the public for a long time, and is now known worldwide. This was a gang that declared war on society. Actually, it is not surprising that Norwegian filmmakers have picked up on this piece of history."
Rathbone plays Jasper in Summit's "Twilight" series and is currently shooting the lead role in M. Night Shyamalan's $140-million "The Last Airbender" for Paramount Pictures.
In a 2004 statement posted on the Burzum.org web site, Vikernes slammed the "Lord Of Chaos" book as "a pool of mud," insisting that "the vast majority of all the statements made in this book are either misinterpretations; taken out of context; misunderstandings; malicious lies made by enemies; a result of ignorance; extreme exaggerations; and/or third-hand information at best. This includes the statements attributed to me!" He went on to say, "This book serves only one single purpose and that is to create a myth around my name and to mystify me. If that was their objective they have indeed succeeded with their work. Well, the book seems to have served one other purpose too. The authors have managed to fill the heads of a generation of metal fans with lies. What could have been a righteous revolt has been made into some pathetic, embarrassing, brain-dead, impotent and traditional poser-culture best exemplified by bands like DIMMU BORGIR — and indeed VENOM!"
Jackson Rathbone / Varg Vikernes:
(Thanks: Elisabeth Haavik)