Thomas Vinterberg

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Thomas Vinterberg
Thomas Vinterberg Berlinale 2010 (cropped).jpg
Vinterberg in 2010
Born (1969-05-19) 19 May 1969 (age 52)
  • Film director
  • producer
  • screenwriter
  • actor
Years active1990–present
Maria Walbom
(m. 1990; div. 2007)

Helene Reingaard Neumann
(m. 2010)

Thomas Vinterberg (Danish: [ˈtsʰʌmæs ˈve̝nˀtɐˌpɛɐ̯ˀ]; born 19 May 1969) is a Danish film director who, along with Lars von Trier, co-founded the Dogme 95 movement in filmmaking, which established rules for simplifying movie production. He is best known for the films The Celebration (1998), Submarino (2010), The Hunt (2012), Far from the Madding Crowd (2015), and Another Round (2020). For Another Round, he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director and won the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Vinterberg was born in Frederiksberg, Denmark. In 1993, he graduated from the National Film School of Denmark with Last Round [da] (Sidste omgang),[2] which won the jury and producers' awards at the Internationales Festival der Filmhochschulen München, and First Prize at Tel Aviv.[3]

The same year, Vinterberg made his first TV drama for DR TV and his short fiction film The Boy Who Walked Backwards [da; ru],[4] produced by Birgitte Hald [da] at Nimbus Film.[5] The film won awards at the 1994 Nordisk Panorama – Nordic Short & Doc Film Festival, the International Short Film Festival in Clermont-Ferrand, and the Toronto International Film Festival.[5]

His first feature film was The Biggest Heroes (De Største Helte), a road movie that received acclaim in his native Denmark.

In 1995, Vinterberg formed the Dogme 95 movement with Lars von Trier, Kristian Levring, and Søren Kragh-Jacobsen.

Following that dogma in 1998, he conceived, wrote and directed (and also had a small acting role in) the first of the Dogme movies, The Celebration (Festen). As per the rules of the Dogme manifesto, he did not take a directorial credit. However, he and the film won numerous nominations and awards, including the Jury Prize at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival.[6]

In 2003, he directed the apocalyptic science fiction romance-drama It's All About Love, a film he wrote, directed and produced himself over a period of five years. The film was entirely in English and featured, among others, Joaquin Phoenix, Claire Danes, and Sean Penn. The movie did not do well, as critics and audiences found it idiosyncratic and somewhat incomprehensible.

His next film, the English-language Dear Wendy (2005), scripted by Lars von Trier, also flopped, even in his native Denmark where it sold only 14,521 tickets.[7] However he won the Silver George for Best Director at the 27th Moscow International Film Festival.[8] Vinterberg then tried to retrace his roots with a smaller Danish-language production, En mand kommer hjem (2007), which also flopped, selling only 31,232 tickets.[9]

On 1 August 2008, he directed the music video for "The Day That Never Comes", the first single off Metallica's album Death Magnetic.

His 2010 film Submarino was nominated for the Golden Bear at the 60th Berlin International Film Festival.[10]

In 2012, his film The Hunt competed for the Palme d'Or at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival[11][12] and was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards.

In 2015, he directed Far from the Madding Crowd, an adaptation of the acclaimed Thomas Hardy novel, starring Carey Mulligan, Matthias Schoenaerts, Michael Sheen and Tom Sturridge.

Vinterberg reunited with Matthias Schoenaerts[13][14] in Kursk,[15] a film about the Kursk submarine disaster that happened in 2000.

In 2019, Vinterberg lost his daughter Ida in a car accident while she was traveling home from Belgium with her mother. As such, he dedicated Another Round (Druk) to her, while filming much of the film in her school with her classmates.[16] Vinterberg was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director for the film, which also won the BAFTA Award for Best Film Not in the English Language. He also won the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film; he dedicated the award to Ida.[17]

He is currently developing his first foray into directing for TV with an original six-episode series called Families Like Ours which explores a near-future Denmark when the country is gradually evacuated due to rising sea levels.[18]


In April 2016, the French government appointed Vinterberg a Chevalier of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.[19]


Year Title[20] Director Writer Notes
1990 Sneblind [da] / Sneblind Yes No short
1991 Brudevalsen Yes Yes short
1993 Last Round [da] / Sidste omgang Yes Yes short
1993 Slaget på tasken Yes Yes short
1994 The Boy Who Walked Backwards [da; ru] / Drengen der gik baglæns Yes Yes short
1996 The Biggest Heroes / De største helte Yes Yes
1998 The Celebration / Festen Yes Yes
2001 D-Day / D-Dag Yes No TV movie
2003 It's All About Love Yes Yes
2005 Dear Wendy Yes No
2007 A Man Comes Home / En mand kommer hjem Yes Yes
2010 Submarino Yes Yes
2012 The Hunt / Jagten Yes Yes
2015 Far from the Madding Crowd Yes No
2016 The Commune / Kollektivet Yes Yes
2018 Kursk Yes No
2020 Another Round / Druk Yes Yes


  1. ^ "Oscars 2021: The Complete Nominations List". Variety. Retrieved 28 March 2021.
  2. ^ Kosmorama. Danske Filmmuseum. 2007. p. 175. Retrieved 14 June 2021. Thomas Vinterberg fandt på Filmskolen sammen med manuskriptforfatteren Bo Hr. Hansen (manus årgang 1991). De skrev sammen hans afgangsfilm Sidste omgang (1993) og siden kortfilmen Drengen der gik baglæns (1994) og ...
  3. ^ Hallberg, J.; Wewerka, A.; Messlinger, K. (2001). Dogma 95: zwischen Kontrolle und Chaos (in German). Alexander Verlag. p. 428. ISBN 978-3-89581-047-3. Retrieved 14 June 2021. Sein Abschlußfilm "SIDSTE OMGANG" (1993) wurde sowohl auf dem Internationalen Studentenfestival in München als auch auf dem Festival in Tel Aviv prämiert und 1994 als bester Studentenfilm für ...
  4. ^ Schneider, S.J. (2007). 501 Movie Directors. 501 Things Series. ABC Books. p. 626. ISBN 978-0-7333-2052-1. Retrieved 14 June 2021.
  5. ^ a b Danske filminstitut (1996). Danish Feature Films. Danish Film Institute. p. 39. Retrieved 14 June 2021.
  6. ^ "Festival de Cannes: The Celebration". Retrieved 29 September 2009.
  7. ^ "Biograftal for danske film 2006". (in Danish). 7 July 2007. Archived from the original on 7 July 2007. Retrieved 1 March 2018.
  8. ^ "27th Moscow International Film Festival (2005)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 3 April 2013. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 20 February 2008. Retrieved 5 January 2008.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  10. ^ "60th Berlin International Film Festival: Programme". Retrieved 16 October 2010.
  11. ^ "2012 Official Selection". Cannes. Retrieved 25 April 2012.
  12. ^ "Cannes Film Festival 2012 line-up announced". Time Out. Archived from the original on 23 April 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2012.
  13. ^ "Matthias Schoenaerts talks about his next projects at ELLE Style Awards 2016". 24 February 2016. Archived from the original on 11 December 2021 – via YouTube.
  14. ^ "Matthias Schoenaerts Starring in Submarine Disaster Movie 'Kursk'". Variety. 2 March 2016.
  15. ^ "Matthias Schoenaerts & Thomas Vinterberg Reunite On EuropaCorp Sub Tale 'Kursk'". Deadline Hollywood. 2 March 2016.
  16. ^ Christensen, Kasper Madsbøll (21 June 2020). "Thomas Vinterberg mistede sin datter i en tragisk ulykke: Nu hylder han hende i ny film". (in Danish). DR. Retrieved 14 December 2020.
  17. ^ "Thomas Vinterberg pays tribute to late daughter in Oscar speech". CNN.
  18. ^ "Screen Daily exclusive: Thomas Vinterberg moves into TV with 'Families Like Ours' | TrustNordisk". Retrieved 24 September 2020.
  19. ^ "Les Danois Mads Mikkelsen et Thomas Vinterberg décorés par la France". Le Figaro (in French). 29 April 2016. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
  20. ^ "Thomas Vinterberg". Danish Film Institute. Retrieved 14 December 2020.

External links[edit]