Connie Nielsen's Danish fantasy drama makes US debut

To celebrate Women’s History Month — there's a new insightful fantasy drama that premieres Thursday on Viaplay: "The Dreamer - Becoming Karen Blixen."

It stars an actress who is used to portraying prolific women on screen. She's starred as Princess Lucilla in the Oscar-winning film "Gladiator" alongside Russell Crowe. And she portrays Hippolyta - the mother of Wonder Woman in the DC film franchise. And now Danish actress Connie Nielsen is executive producer and star of "The Dreamer - Becoming Karen Blixen."

The series, set in the 1930s, follows Blixen, an author returning to Denmark after years in East Africa, and her journey from penniless, sick and divorced to renowned writer.

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Nielsen tells FOX 5’s Ryan Kristafer that most films about female artists and authors focus on their sex lives or physical appearance, whereas Nielsen wanted to share the story of a woman’s struggle for success.

Danish actress Connie Nielsen poses for a photo session during the 5th edition of the Cannes International Series Festival (Canneseries) on April 4, 2022 in Cannes, southern France. (Photo by JOEL SAGET/AFP via Getty Images)

"I wanted to show what is that artistic process, and so we chose a story called ‘The Dreamer,’ and we wanted to show how this author is actually seeing herself in all of these different characters (also played by Nielsen). And they’re all sort of female archetypes. Inside this short story, we see Karen (Blixen) in all of these characters, and for me that was tough, let me just tell you. I had to first lose a lot of weight to look like a sick little bird, because I went from ‘Wonder Woman’ and ‘Justice League’ where I was so pumped up. And then all of a sudden, I had to look like a little sparrow."

We tried to find out if Nielsen is going to be part of "Paradise Lost," the upcoming "Wonder Woman" series created by newly appointed DC boss, James Gunn. She replied:

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"Well, I have no idea what they’re going to do about it yet. No one has said anything, so we don’t know anything yet."

And as for the Ridley Scott’s "Gladiator" sequel that’s set to be released in 2024: Will we see Princess Lucilla in the second installment of the epic?

"I can’t tell you yet."

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Nielsen did tell us what it was like when she first arrived to the set of "Gladiator" in 1999.

"You drove up on set in Malta, at the arrival and there’s a quarter of the actual Colosseum built there. And a city square of Rome and Ridley chomping on his cigar, walking down one of the lanes to welcome me. I realized in that moment the sheer scale of what we were about to do."

"The Dreamer - Becoming Karen Blixen" premieres Thursday on Viaplay.