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BOX OFFICE Denmark

Checkered Ninja exceeds 900,000 admissions in Denmark

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- The animated blockbuster has become the most successful Danish film in local cinemas, selling 900,000 tickets for the first time since Per Holst’s Walter and Carlo - Up on Daddys Hat in 1985

Checkered Ninja exceeds 900,000 admissions in Denmark
Checkered Ninja by Anders Matthesen and Thorbjørn Christoffersenn

The animated feature film Checkered Ninja by Anders Matthesen and Thorbjørn Christoffersenn has now become the most successful Danish film of the past 34 years because, as of last week, it has attracted more than 900,000 viewers to local cinemas. Released on Christmas Day last year, the blockbuster has already been screened successfully for ten weeks, smashing through the 900,000-admission mark, an event that last happened with Per Holst’s comedy Walter and Carlo - Up on Daddys Hat in 1985.

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Checkered Ninja is about Aske, a schoolboy who gets a ninja doll from his Uncle Stewart after a trip to Thailand. Aske soon realises that the oddly patterned doll with buttons for eyes is actually alive and can protect him from getting bullied at school. However, when Aske decides to return the favour, he discovers that the ninja doll is possessed and that he’s on a mission to exact his revenge. The story was written by Anders Matthesen, who also lends his vocal talents to the movie, while Alfred Bjerre Larsen provides the voice of Aske.

According to a report by the Danish Film Institute, which also supported the production of Checkered Ninja, since 1980, only two Danish films have sold over 900,000 tickets: the aforementioned Walter and Carlo and the drama In the Middle of the Night, which was the last movie directed by Erik Balling and was released in 1984. Of the rest of the films that exceeded that threshold, six are American, one is British, and two are European co-productions by Danish directors: Bille August’s The House of the Spirits (1993) and Niels Arden Oplev’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Niels Arden Oplev
interview: Søren Stærmose
film profile
]
(2009).

Over the same period, four Danish films sold more than 800,000 tickets: Mikkel Nørgaard's Klown [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
(2010), Lone Scherfig's Italian for Beginners (2000), Susanne Bier's The One and Only (1999) and Sven Methling's The Crumbs (1991).

Checkered Ninja was produced by Anders Mastrup and Trine Heidegaard for Denmark’s A-Film animation studio, in co-production with Sudoko ApS, Pop Up Production and DR, with support from the Danish Film Institute. Nordisk Film Distribution holds the distribution rights for Scandinavia and will release a version of the film featuring the voice of Herman Flesvig in Norway on 24 May, while Danish outfit LevelK is handling the international sales.

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