The villains in the film, the "tjuder", are not supposed to vikings as some sources claim. Tjud or chud is a term historically applied in the early Russian annals to several Finnic peoples. They often appear in Sami stories (like the one which this film is based on) as traditional, generic villains. Vikings where a trade among the Norse (Scandinavian) Germanic tribes. Note that the clothing and weaponry of the "tjuder" in the film are very different from the ones used by viking. The script actually stated the "tjuder" to be eastern. But the filmmakers felt it would be offensive to Russian viewers so they made up a language for them to speak, making their origin rather vague.