Viaplay’s Danish original scripted productions halted since June can start rolling again, while negotiations with Netflix and TV2 Danmark are on-going.

July was a particularly heated month for the Danish Producers' Association and Create Denmark (umbrella body representing writers, actors, directors, editors, cinematographers, production designers among others), involved in a dispute with Netflix, Viaplay and TV2 over payments for the exploitation of their works on those platforms. See our story: CLICK HERE.

The first positive step came July 18, when Create Denmark, the Danish Producers’ Association and Viaplay signed a temporary agreement, which enabled the 15 or so Viaplay Danish films and series in development and production, in a standstill since June, to get going again. In their joint-statement, all parties admitted that they made concessions to unblock the situation, until long-term solutions could be found, hopefully at the next round of talks in the fall.

Speaking to about the temporary arrangement with Viaplay, Jørgen Ramskov, CEO at the Producers’ Association said he was “very optimistic, based on the initial discussions on a long-term agreement that can be based on data and actual consuming [of scripted content]” he said.

"This [interim agreement] is an important first step, but we must also continue to remember that there are other challenges in the Danish media market that need to be addressed and solved,” said Viaplay’s VP and Chief Content Officer Filippa Wallestam, alluding to Denmark’s 6% streaming tax passed by law in May.

Regarding Netflix and TV2, negotiations are due to pick up pace, after positive meetings with the US streaming giant in July, and a similar positive dialogue with TV2, according to Create Denmark.

While the Danish industry is holding its breath, and hoping for a positive outcome to the dispute, which has put on hold nearly 50 titles in development and production according to Ramskov, the Danish workers’ movement has received support from abroad.

Indeed, labour unions in the US (SAG-AFTRA), Ireland (Irish Equity Group), the UK (Equity UK), and Europe (‘EuroFIA’ for European Group of the International Federation of Actors) have all expressed solidarity with their Danish counterparts.

“Purchasing all rights upfront and in perpetuity for an upfront payment should not be tolerated anymore,” said EuroFIA which condemns the streamers’ business model for being “detrimental to the livelihood of performers and other creators, but also to the local ecosystem.”

For its part, the major US workers’ union SAG-AFTRA which represents around 160,000 members, said they fully support the rights of members of Create Denmark and the Danish Actors Union, as well as rights holders, “to engage with the streaming platforms in negotiating fair compensation and appropriate remuneration, including ongoing secondary use payments for Danish performers.”

Denmark is the only Nordic country with an umbrella organisation - Create Denmark - responsible for negotiating digital use of local drama series and other audio-visual works, on behalf of thousands of artists.

For further information about Create Denmark, check: