Song of the Scarlet Flower was Teuvo Tulio’s first independently produced film, and the earliest of his surviving films.
“I had for a while been thinking of filming Johannes Linnankoski’s novel. Surprisingly this popular Don Juan-tale hadn’t yet been filmed in Finland. It had been done in Sweden twice: first as a silent film by the world-famous Mauritz Stiller and later as a sound film by the esteemed director Per-Axel Branner.
I knew the task would be hard. Viewers often maintain overblown memories of movies they have liked. The fight for audience’s approval would be strenuous. Moreover, the Swedes had had two top-notch actors, Lars Hanson and Edvin Adolphson, playing Olavi. My only chance would be wild rapids-riding scenes and intensive love scenes, which were my specialty. The movie was an enticing challenge, I believed I would be able to offer something new and different. These were bold thoughts, but it meant a lot to me and my career. I decided to try.” Continue reading