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Headhunters (2011)
"Hodejegerne" (original title)

R  |   |  Crime, Thriller  |  26 August 2011 (Norway)
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 74,271 users   Metascore: 72/100
Reviews: 113 user | 275 critic | 26 from Metacritic.com

An accomplished headhunter risks everything to obtain a valuable painting owned by a former mercenary.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 6 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lotte (as Julie Ølgaard)
Kyrre Haugen Sydness ...
Valentina Alexeeva ...
Reidar Sørensen ...
Joachim Rafaelsen ...
Mats Mogeland ...
Gunnar Skramstad Johnsen ...
Monsen 1
Lars Skramstad Johnsen ...
Monsen 2
Signe Tynning ...
Nils Gunnar Lie ...


Roger Brown works as one of the most powerful headhunters in Norway. To support his extravagant lifestyle, he is also an art thief, which he does in cahoots with his friend, the gun toting Ove Kjikerud. They replace the originals with forgeries, which go undetected at least until the trail back to them goes cold. His outward bravado, based primarily on building upon reputation, masks his insecurities, especially in his short physical stature. He feels he needs that confident demeanor and wealth to get what he wants, including his trophy wife, art gallery owner Diana Brown. However, he almost seems to like the thought of what Diana represents more than Diana herself. As such, he has a mistress on the side named Lotte. The issue of having a baby - Diana wants to get pregnant while Roger doesn't want her to - is another bone of contention in their marriage. The two sides of Roger's professional life intersect when Diana introduces him to Clas Greve, who would be perfect for the CEO ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The hunt is on.


Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for bloody violence including some grisly images, strong sexual content and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

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Release Date:

26 August 2011 (Norway)  »

Also Known As:

Headhunters  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


NOK 30,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$43,013 (USA) (27 April 2012)


$1,196,752 (USA) (10 August 2012)

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(5.1 surround)


Aspect Ratio:

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Did You Know?


Upon its release, the film has been sold to over 50 countries - a record for any Norwegian film. See more »


When Roger Brown returns to Oslo after the car crash he is seen calling from a pay phone in Grønland Bussterminal, in the next shot he is seen walking over a bridge towards the bus station. See more »


Referenced in MythBusters: Hypermiling/Crash Cushions (2013) See more »


Performed by Weathervane (Jimmy Gnecco & Pål Waaktaar)
Lyrics by Pål Waaktaar (as Paul Waaktaar-Savoy)
Published by Paul Waaktaar-Savoy
See more »

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User Reviews

Smart, intelligent, engaging and surprisingly witty Headhunters
27 August 2011 | by (Norway) – See all my reviews

At first I have to say I read the novel of which this movie is based upon, "Headhunters" by Jo Nesbø, two years ago. A thriller I liked quite a lot. Usually a novel is better than the film. Well, here Morten Tyldum (Acclaimed films as "Buddy" and a short in "Most people usually live in China"), succeeded in making a film just as interesting and exciting as the book.

Nesbø's writing is interesting. This is most probably why Jo Nesbø's first movie adaption of his series of novels with Harry Hole will be directed by Martin Scorsese, on Nesbø's demand - his favorite director.

Actually I still kept being surprised as the movie went along. Not only because I can't remember all details in the book, but simply because the movie has a pace and also from time to time action-clipping which makes you feel poor Roger Brown's disasters. The handcraft is beautifully done. As simple as that.

Actually this film was sold to more than 50 distributors in just as many countries before it even premiered in Norway. Probably both to the novel writers Jo Nesbø's for the latter years has become world acclaimed and compared to Stieg Larsson, buy maybe also due to director Morten Tyldums merits so far. Of course also credit to the producers, managing to sell on a promise!?

Mark Wahlberg has said he was stunned by the film, and is now to make an American remake of it, with himself as Roger. Which, of course, is not at all needed. The original is as good as it gets.

Well, back to the story. Roger Brown is a self-obtained headhunter for big companies, which has to steal art on the side to keep his woman happy. Or at least he think he has to do so. He has all the right connections, until he starts stealing from the wrong guy, while headhunting him as a new boss to a successful company. A former mercenary, or different kind of headhunter, he's turning out to be. When he understands that his greed has gotten him into trouble, he really finds out what it is, being headhunted.

Both Aksel Hennie and Nicolai Coaster-Waldau is perfectly casted for this movie. Synnøve Macody Lund does a decent job in her debut-role, as do the rest of the cast. Fun also to see that real working police-chiefs in Oslo are attending the police press conference in the movie. Didn't know that even was possible for them to be allowed to do that. This actually makes both an in-joke as well as making the plot believable and "true" in our country.

It will surprise me if this film doesn't get a remake in Hollywood in less than two years. Not that it'll be as good as this, or even necessary. But that's how the Hollywood-world is, nowadays.

No doubt, the script is good. So is in all aspects the rest of the film as well. The film is smart, intelligent, surprising witty, and will engage you all the way through, both as a good story as well as a love story or a thriller. How much more do you want?

185 of 227 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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