Hunted: Mads Mikkelsen plays a kindergarten teacher in a small town accused of molesting a young girl.
Vinterberg sees his new film as both the antithesis of Festen and a parallel story. ”It is a parallel in that it is the children who are the victims again,” he insists. True, we see a child effectively destroy an innocent man.
”But in real life, if we say that it’s actually a lie, but this kid to satisfy the grown-ups has told a lie, then this huge illusion appears in front of her. Her mother cries, she is sent to the gynaecologist, someone is put in prison – maybe even someone she likes – and it all becomes true and a part of her memory, so she will suffer in a similar way as people who actually suffer from abuse.
”I find that really worrying and, of course, interesting,” says Vinterberg
He and his co-writer, Tobias Lindholm, decided early on that there should be no doubt of Lucas’ innocence. ”I’m really glad we came to that conclusion,” Vinterberg says, ”because we are already up against a difficult thing, which is that the audience is trained to be suspicious. In fact, you can love your suspiciousness and want to be entertained by it. But we tried very hard to avoid that. Every time we had an angle of Mads from below where he could look like a child molester, it was a red alert to move the camera.”