The four-part Swedish TV drama directed by Lisa James Larsson (Victoria, Britannia) starts filming in Sweden next month.

The yet untitled Kurt Haijby project is based on an original script by prolific actor Bengt Braskered (Sound of Noise, Jordskott). Stella Nova’s Lena Rehnberg (Waltz with Monica) is producing.

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The real-life inspired drama is set between 1933 and the 1950s. It follows the forbidden love affair between King Gustav V and entrepreneur Kurt Haijby, which shook Sweden’s royal family for decades and led to one of the most serious legal scandals in Swedish history. 

In the series, top actor Sverrir Gudnason (Borg Vs McEnroe, The Girl in the Spider’s Web) plays Kurt Haijby, while Staffan Göthe (Bäckström) is King Gustav V. 

Year 1933 - Kurt Haijby runs a restaurant with his wife Anna Lido in the heart of Stockholm’s entertainment district. But Haijby has a criminal record and is denied an application for an alcohol licence. He decides to bring his case directly to the King. During his meeting with the ageing Gustav V, the men fall for each other and start a secret and forbidden relationship. At a time when homosexuality is a criminal offence and the monarchy is threatened by politics, there is no room for scandals.

Haijby and the King of Sweden’s affair takes a brutal turn when Anna uncovers their liaison and files for divorce, stating her husband’s infidelity with Gustav V. A desperate legal battle sets off to save the monarchy from a disaster. 

Rehnberg says “the case was highly controversial in the 30s-40s as being gay was considered a crime in Sweden until 1946 and a mental disease until 1978. She told that Sweden’s Royal family is familiar with the TV project. “We are in contact with people that are employed by the Castle so they know about it,” she noted. 

Anna Croneman, Head of Drama at SVT says the Kurt Haijby project is in line with the Swedish public broadcaster’s strategy of “telling unique stories about Sweden, in all conceivable genres.” “The miniseries about Haijby is definitely such a story, and it's hard not to be fascinated by what happened or didn't happen between Kurt Haijby and Gustaf V and the legal scandal that followed. We are extremely pleased with the ensemble of talents who will now realise Bengt’s superb script, full of intrigue, love and power play.”

The series is co-produced by Film i Väst and Film Capital Stockholm.  Filming was originally set to take place in Hungary, but due to the Covid-19 outbreak, has now been relocated to Gothenburg, Trollhättan and Stockholm.  The premiere on SVT is set for Christmas 2021.