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Fortitude finale begins on Sky Atlantic this week following Bristol & Norway shoot

4th December 2018

Categories: Latest News

The third and final series of Arctic thriller Fortitude, starring Richard Dormer and Dennis Quaid, begins on Sky Atlantic this week (6th December), after basing UK production at The Bottle Yard Studios in Bristol earlier this year.

Cast on set at The Bottle Yard Studio

Image: Cast on set at The Bottle Yard Studios. Credit: Sky Atlantic

The new four-part mini-series made by British production company Fifty Fathoms filmed on location in Svalbard, Norway where writer Simon Donald found his original inspiration for the series, whilst interior scenes were shot on set at The Bottle Yard Studios.

The team built sets in three studios spanning a total of 50,0000 sq. ft. of space, basing all departments on site for six months. The Studios’ onsite tenants MTFX, Phoenix Casting, Visual Impact, Robert Plant Hire and TR Film & TV Scaffolding Services were all involved in supporting production during the UK leg of filming, as well as other local suppliers, freelance crew and hotels.

Patrick Spence, Executive Producer said “Filming in Bristol at The Bottle Yard Studios was a genuinely happy experience. The cast and crew immediately felt at home, the facilities and staff were top rate, and the shoot ran smoothly due in no small part to their help. What more could we as producers ask for?”

Fortitude’s producers Fifty Fathoms also lent their unparalleled support to the ongoing work of The Bottle Yard Studios, supported by Mayor of Bristol Marvin Rees, to create new skills opportunities and work experience for young media talent in the city. In April, unprecedented set access was given for a group of seven 17 year old students studying Media Production Diplomas with further education provider boomsatsuma. The group were given the rare chance to experience a working high end TV set and interview producer Andrew Wood, Director Kieron Hawkes, (Director), Callum Devrell-Cameron (Assistant Producer), Paul Spriggs (Production Designer), key cast Luke Treadaway and Mia Jexen, plus camera, sound, makeup, costume, unit photography and publicity departments. The students produced a behind the scenes film to document their experience, which also included meeting the Mayor. 

Image Credit: boomsatsuma

Fiona Francombe, Site Director of The Bottle Yard Studios said: “It’s hard to quantify the impact that hosting Fortitude created in Bristol. Not only did this skilled production team make Bristol its home, they embraced the opportunity to make a difference while they were here. Not just by employing local crew and companies and spending their budget locally, but by arranging a fantastic skills day which covered a wide range of production roles, topped off by the chance for the students to screen their film to the show’s creators later in the year. This is an experience these young people will never forget. Fortitude is a sensational hit followed by millions of viewers, yet this team took the time to give the crew of tomorrow an inside look at the magic of how it’s made. We’re very grateful to Fifty Fathoms and Sky Atlantic and invite more productions to follow their lead in future.”

boomsatsuma student Laylah Silver said: "Opportunities like this don’t come around very often and getting to experience a professional set and see how the production runs was really inspiring for all of us. It was great to see how everyone’s role matters and how they all worked as part of team. It definitely inspired us to want to be a part of a working set like this one day.”

Students presented their film at an exclusive Royal Television Society West of England preview event at the Watershed on 24th October, which also featured a Q&A for Bristol audiences with the show’s creator Simon Donald and Executive Producer Patrick Spence. Donald, Spence and script producer Ben Stoll also attended a Writers’ Roundtable workshop prior to the preview, meeting with twenty-four local writers to share career advice and insights on moving an idea from script to screen.

Image - Simon Donald talks at roundtable workshop at Watershed

Image credit: Justin Yockney

Series 3 features an all-star cast of returning favourites and new characters including Dennis Quaid (Far from Heaven), Richard Dormer (Game of Thrones), Sienna Guillory (Stan Lee’s Lucky Man), Luke Treadaway (A Street Cat Named Bob), Alexandra Moen (Strike Back), Mia Jexen (Happiness) and Bjorn Hlynur Haraldsson (Jar City),

We return to Fortitude at the start of Season 3 with the death of Governor Munk (Ken Stott) continuing to hang over the town, as the inhabitants of the most staggeringly beautiful place on earth begin to piece their lives back together after the horrors of Season 2. The authorities in Oslo have despatched two police officers, Myklebust (Maria Schrader) and Oby (Set Sjostrand), to investigate and their persistence leads them dangerously close to the truth. What nobody has reckoned on are the depths of madness that Dan Anderssen (Richard Dormer) is now slowly sinking into and he is a nemesis that they will have to face.

Everything in Fortitude seems a bit crazy. Nothing more so than when Oslo appoints an interim governor and the town realises that the man now in charge of their fates is none other than Markus Husekleppe (Darren Boyd) the oddball school teacher who lost his girlfriend to the parasite. But what nobody has reckoned on are the depths of madness that Dan Anderssen is now slowly sinking into and what awful violence is just over the horizon. The town also welcomes some mysterious strangers from the US the ageing and glamorous Elsa Schental (Aliette Opheim) and her protective husband Boyd Mulvihill (Abubakar Salim). Elsa's fate becomes inextricably linked with Michael Lennox's (Dennis Quaid). He is drinking himself to death following the loss of his wife and she offers him some hope of redemption. Dan is also looking for some sort of redemption and is clinging on desperately to his identity as Sheriff. Guardian and protector. But in Fortitude, redemption always comes with a heavy price.

Fortitude is written by Simon Donald (Low Winter Sun) and executive producers for Fifty Fathoms are Patrick Spence (The A Word, Guerrilla), Simon Donald, Dennis Quaid (The Art of More). Sky’s head of drama Anne Mensah is executive producer for Sky. It is produced by Andrew Wood (Will), directed by Kieron Hawkes (Strike) with production design by Paul Spriggs (The A Word). 1.4 million viewers tuned in to each episode of the second series last year, which was described as “wholly immersive” by The Observer and “stunning and brilliantly acted” by Empire. Series one and two have been sold to more than 200 broadcasters internationally, making it Sky Vision’s bestselling programme.

All Episodes of Fortitude 3 will be available to watch from Thursday December 6th on Sky Atlantic and Now TV.

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