"One Sunday, when I was very young, I discovered that there existed two parallel worlds … It happened when I went to a movie matinee … I never forget crowd's jubilant anticipation, the explosion of air-borne caps, and the loud noise made to honor and hold the precious moment when the lights were dimmed and the curtain opened for a showing of this week's dream. All this at the local movie house, the temple of my childhood."

—Stig Dagerman, Essay, Collected Works 11

Dagerman was early on fascinated by the medium of film. Much of his writing is very visual and often uses cinematic story-telling techniques (like in the short stories To Kill A Child and The Games of Night). As a consequence, many of his works have inspired, and continue to inspire, filmmakers in Sweden and abroad.

"Dagerman has long been one of my favorite writers. To Kill A Child was my directing debut. The short format felt just right, I was not ready to take on a feature based on novels like The Snake or A Burnt Child. I was also fascinated by the dramatugy of this short story, where the terrible but unrevocable ending is known to the reader already while reading the first lines."

Alexander Skarsgård, co-director of To Kill A Child

Stig Dagerman's life has also been the subject of several documentaries.

Dagerman and Hollywood

Dagerman had a chance to visit Hollywood with his partner Swedish actress Anita Björk, who was offered a contract to work with Alfred Hitchcock. Although the couple established friendships with actors such as Montgomery Clift, they did not much care for life in Los Angeles or the authoritarian atmosphere of studio life, and after some months, they packed their bags to return to Sweden. The precipitating event was that they had a daughter, but were not yet married. Even worse for Hollywood in the early 50s, Stig was not yet divorced from his first wife. When the studio demanded that Stig file for a quick divorce in USA, the couple balked at this intrusion into their privacy and, with no regrets, went back home.

Filmography by Text

DVD still of 1946 Automne Allemand. DVD still of Automne Allemand '46.

German Autumn (journalism)

2008
Automne Allemand '46. Documentary film (80 min), France. By Michaël Gaumnitz.
1977
Tysk höst. TV report from Germany (20 min), Sweden.

To Kill A Child (short story)

2008
To Kill A Child. Short film, Norway. Krutfilm/Freeshine.
2003
Att döda ett barn/To Kill A Child. Short film, Sweden, Finland. Directed by Björne Larson and Alexander Skarsgård. Narrated by Stellan Skarsgård. Award-winning.
1953
Att döda ett barn. Short film (8 min), Sweden. Directed by Gösta Werner. Award-winning.

Cover of The Games of Night. Cover of The Games of Night, a short film directed by Dan Levy Dagerman.

The Games of Night (short story)

2008
The Games of Night. Short film (20 min), USA. Directed by Dan Levy Dagerman. Award-winning.
1978
Nattens lekar. Short film (34 min), Sweden. Directed by Kurt-Olof Sundström.
1955
Nattens lekar. Short film (17 min), Sweden. Directed by Sten Dahlgren.

Our Need for Consolation Is Insatiable (essay), see Theater, Music, Dance

2012
Our Need for Consolation. Short film (19 min), Sweden. Directed by Dan Levy Dagerman.
2009
En liten film om vilka tankar man kan få av att brodera. Short film, Sweden. Directed by Marjo Marthin.

A Burnt Child (novel), see Theater

1991
L’enfant brûlé. Filmscript by Martin Pierlot, Sofis-Films Sarl, France.
1967
Bränt barn. Feature film, Sweden. Directed by Hans Abrahamson. Cinematographer: Sven Nyqvist, Minerva Film.

The Shadow of Mart (play), see Theater

1983
Skuggan av Mart. TV film (75 min), Sweden. Directed by Kurt-Olof Sundström.
1966
Skuggan av Mart. TV film (80 min), Sweden. Directed by Johan Bergenstråhle.

Birgitta Poems (poetry)

1987
Birgittasvit. Short film (10 min), Sweden. Directed by Göran du Rees.

The Climber (play), see Theater

1978
Streber. TV film (120 min), Sweden. Directed by Christian Lund.

The Surprise (short story)

1973
Överraskningen. TV film (52 min), Sweden. Directed by Georg Oddner.

DVD cover of Ormen. DVD cover of Ormen (The Snake).

The Day of Judgment (radio play)

1970
Den yttersta dagen. TV film (75 min), Sweden. Directed by Per Sjöstrand.

The Snake (novel)

1966
Ormen. Feature film, Sweden. Directed by Hans Abrahamson.

Wedding Worries (novel)

1964
Bröllopsbesvär. Feature film, Sweden. Directed by Åke Falck.

One More Brother (poem), see Music

1962
En broder mer. Short film (20 min), Sweden. Algerian refugees in Tunisia. Directed by Jan Troell and Bertil Rubin.

Documentaries about Stig Dagerman

2004
Stig Dagerman. Documentary (60 min), Sweden. By Anneli Rogeman for "K Special", Swedish TV.
1989
Dagerman. Documentary (60 min), France. By Pierre Beuchot and Swedish novelist Klas Östergren.
1984
Stig Dagerman – ett diktarporträtt. Documentary (60 min), Sweden. By Magnus Roselius.