Kristofer Hivju, a.k.a. Tormund Giantsbane from “Game of Thrones,” is hosting a Smithsonian Channel competition about becoming a real-life Viking. The hour-long format, working-titled “Ultimate Viking,” has an 8-episode order and Hivju’s wife Gry Molvær Hivju aboard as co-host.
Filming has already begun on the production, which is set in both the UK and Norway. The latter “Ultimate Viking” coastal location comes complete with a “custom Viking settlement being constructed,” according to Smithsonian. The show is set to debut in 2021.
“This ingenious adventure series will feature a diverse cast of modern-day, highly skilled men and women who will be pushed to the extreme as they find out if they have what it takes to live as true Vikings,” the show’s not-too-modest logline reads.
Watch Tormund’s (OK, Kristofer’s) casting call via the video above.
Find more details about the series below.
Each episode is rooted in authentic Viking knowledge exploring every aspect of Viking life to truly discover what it was like to live as a Viking over 1000 years ago. Cameras will follow ordinary people taking part in extraordinary expeditions under harsh Nordic conditions. The clans will compete against each other in a series of authentic and often extreme Viking survival expeditions, challenges, and tasks based on historical facts, saga literature and archaeological evidence.
Life in Viking society is not for the faint-hearted as our cast live side by side in a real Viking settlement, with every detail authentic to the era, from the buildings to the clothes, tools, and food. Participants will need to master axes and swords, learn to forage and fish in Norway’s snow-capped mountains and master the art of sailing a Viking ship, mentored by the world’s leading Viking historians. Even in times of peace, the Vikings’ strong, cultured and sophisticated communities were fiercely competitive.
“Ultimate Viking” is produced by Wildflame Productions Ltd., Zig Zag Productions Ltd. and Tindefilm. Executive producers are David Royle, Charles Poe, Llinos Griffin-Williams, Paul Islwyn Thomas, Hilde Nerland, Danny Fenton and Matt Graff.
The series is directed by showrunner Stephen Shearman, with original music composed by Silvia Strand and Jonathan Gregory.
“We are very excited to host this living history adventure series set in our beautiful country Norway,” the Hivjus, co-founders of Tindefilm, said in a joint statement on Tuesday. “We are proud to show the fjords, ocean and wild mountains that our ancestors saw. For us, this series is all about a genuine extreme experience based on Viking society, set deep in the heart of the land of the Vikings. It’s going to be exciting, ambitious and based on historical evidence.”