Øystein Karlsen

Øystein Karlsen (b.1971) is Norway’s most sought-after and edgy screenwriter and director. Karlsen is the name behind several highly successful and celebrated Norwegian TV series, including Dag (2010-2015), One Night (2017) and Exit (2019). Karlsen is also the director of several episodes of the popular and awarded Norwegian-American Netflix Original Lilyhammer (2014).

Karlsen is the creator, writer and director of the TV series Dag, which became an instant hit with the audience and received rave reviews from a choir of critics fascinated by Karlsen’s dark, absurd humor and original style. In total, Dag has received a staggering 36 Golden Screen nominations (the Norwegian equivalent of an Emmy) and 11 wins, which is a record to date.

Karlsen’s feature film debut, Fuck Up, premiered in 2012 to great reviews, and following its US festival screenings, the American film magazine Twitch films picked Fuck Up to head its 2012 top ten list with the motivation “It is pretty damn close to being a perfect film.” They also listed Karlsen among the top up and coming directors.

2019 saw the premiere of Karlsen’s latest creation, the scandalous success series Exit, which shook Norway to its core and quickly became the most streamed series in NRK’s history. The dark and twisted drama is lauded around the world, and has generated more publicity than any other Norwegian series. Based on true events, Exit is set in Norway’s high-flying financial world. It revolves around four narcissistic men in their 30s who are looking for an exit from everyday pressures and obligations by using drugs, prostitutes and challenging their own – already low – sets of moral values.

Karlsen is currently in pre-production on Exit season 2, and in development on three international shows.

Filmography

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Øystein Karlsen is Norway’s most sought-after and edgy screenwriter and director. Karlsen is the name behind several highly successful and celebrated Norwegian TV series, including Dag (2010-2015), One Night (2017) and Exit (2019). Karlsen is also the director of several episodes of the popular and awarded Norwegian-American Netflix Original Lilyhammer (2014).

2019 saw the premiere of Karlsen’s latest creation, the scandalous success series Exit, which shook Norway to its core and quickly became the most streamed series in NRK’s history. The dark and twisted drama is lauded around the world, and has generated more publicity than any other Norwegian series. Based on true events, Exit is set in Norway’s high-flying financial world. It revolves around four narcissistic men in their 30s who are looking for an exit from everyday pressures and obligations by using drugs, prostitutes and challenging their own – already low – sets of moral values.

Karlsen is currently in pre-production on Exit season 2, and in development on three international shows.