Get closer to the writers of the Finnish drama series Deadwind (Karppi), nominated for the Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize to be awarded January 31st in Göteborg.

Deadwind is a crime drama series mixing crime investigation and personal drama. The main character is Sofia Karppi, a female detective in her 40’s, who has just lost her husband and is left alone with two children to take care of. Back at work, her first assignment is to investigate the murder of a young woman, found on a construction site. The case will have a major impact on her life, as well as on the upper echelons of society. Cast members comprise Pihla Viitala (Black Widows, Hansel & Gretel-Witch Hunters), Lauri Tilkanen (Tom of Finland) and Tommi Korpela (Love & OrderRare Exports-A Christmas Tale).

The 12x45’ show is directed by co-writer Rike Jokela for Finland’s Dionysos Films. Germany’s H&V Entertainment co- produces. The premiere on YLE is set for March 14, 2018. Paris-based About Premium Content handles world sales.

Kirsi Porkka is a playwright and screenwriter, who writes for theatre, radio and television. She has written the two episodes of the drama-comedy Hyvät neuvot kalliit with co-writers Harri Virtanen and Veli-Pekka Hänninen and is a regular collaborator to playwright/director Marina Meinander. Porkka is currently working on the new drama comedy My Best Enemy about a lawyer and a criminal, two childhood friends on the road, directed by Rike Jokela, as well as Deadwind season 2.

What makes you tick in terms of genre and storytelling?
KP: In every genre I'm interested in characters and their unique stories. Genre is a playground: it brings some expectations and rules that can also be challenging.

What do you find the most rewarding and the most challenging about writing for television?
KP: The most challenging and rewarding is to find the theme - what is the net which connects the whole story and more or less all the characters.

Cite your top 3 TV shows that you’ve binge-watched recently.
KP: True Detective, Sherlock and Olivia Kitteridge, and among Nordic shows Borgen and Solsidan.

Jari Olavi Rantala is a screenwriter with over a decade's experience working for film and television. He has worked with the established director Aku Louhimies on four of his films, such as Frozen Land (Jussi award- Best Script) and Finland’s current box office hit The Unknown Soldier, adapted from Väinö Linna’s literary classic. His TV drama credit includes the hospital series Nurses (Syke), and Kynsin hampain, directed by Rike Jokela.

Rantala is working on several drama series, including Deadwind season 2. He has written a book about the making of the film The Unknown Soldier.

What makes you tick in terms of genre and storytelling?
JOR: I am not picky with genres and have written crime of course, but also different kinds of drama, war, thriller and comedy. In the future I would like to write science fiction in some form. In storytelling I'm trying to find a balance between a character and plot. My goal is to write as close to the character as I possibly can, almost to be able to see the scenes through the characters’ eyes.

What do you find the most rewarding and the most challenging about writing for television? JOR: Television is a writer’s medium and allows to develop character arcs and multi-plot stories more freely and extensively than films. The challenge is that you have to deal with large tapestries of plots, sub-plots and characters which takes a lot of time and patience.

Cite your top 3 TV shows that you’ve binge-watched recently.
JOR: I just watched all seasons of Veep which I enjoyed a lot. I’ve also been watching Homeland and The Expanse season 2 lately. With my daughter we enjoy watching Brooklyn Nine-Nine, we’re watching the whole series for the third time!

Rike Jokela is punk rocker who ended up working as a cinematographer, writer and director for film and television. Over the last two decades, he has directed more than 15 TV series and won Venla awards (local Emmys) for shows including Firma-Philosophy for Sale (also nominated for a Rose d’or), and Suojelijat (Protectors). Nelonen’s TV show Remontti (Renovation) co-written and directed by Jokela was nominated for Best Drama at the Prix Europa and the Venla awards 2003.

He also created and directed the highly successful crime series Virta (River) and most recently, was attached to Freemantle/MTV3’s comedy series Kynsin hampain. Jokela’s first feature film as a director was the comedy Tatu & Patu  (third biggest grossing film of 2016). Jokela is currently writing Deadwind season 2 and developing several screenplays.

He teaches directing and cinematography at Helsinki’s Aalto University and Theatre Academy.

What makes you tick in terms of genre and storytelling?
I’m the most interested in crime and comedy. I like when believable characters act unexpectedly or say the opposite you assume them to say.

What do you find the most rewarding and the most challenging about writing for television?
RJ: I don’t see that much difference in writing/directing for film or television. In TV series, you get to know your main character so well that you start to think of her or him as a real person, which I find quite bizarre but interesting. For me, an actor is also an important collaborator in the writing process. The biggest challenge might be to find the basic idea of a show or season.

Cite your top 3 TV shows that you’ve binge-watched recently
RJ: Recently I’ve enjoyed The End of the F***ing World season 1 which I found brilliant, Happy Valley, Better Call Saul and Game of Thrones. However, my favourites are The Office, Breaking Bad and The Killing (both versions). I haven’t seen so many Nordic shows after Wallander and Beck, although I found Bron/Broen season 1 really exciting.