Carola in Hollywood
Talented Swedish singer Carola Häggkvist is in Hollywood, making a movie starring, among others, Kris Kristofferson. The film, “Yohan—The Child Wanderer,” is an action-filled family movie with a historic background, based on true stories about the child wanderings which occurred in East and West Agder Counties between 1800-1910. Carola, who plays a singer, has a scene with Kristofferson and sings the film’s theme song. The film is directed by Norwegian Grete Salomonsen and also stars Alexander Rybak, winner of last year’s Eurovision Song Contest. The movie premiere is set for March 26.

A wedding gown for Victoria
It will be blue and yellow—Victoria’s wedding gown! Well, it will be white, of course, but it will be Made in Sweden, at least if we are to believe fashion designer Camilla Thulin. “Almgrens Sidenväveri has woven 30 meters of duchesse silk satin of the highest quality,” Thulin said on Swedish TV. “It’s wonderful that the Crown Princess’s gown is woven according to Swedish tradition. Victoria is so colorful, the classical and simple suits her best. No lace or other strange things for her!” Even the Crown Princess’s shoes will be Swedish made, Thulin believes. Framåt, a shoemaker’s shop in Gamla Stan in Stockholm makes beautiful handmade shoes. “They’ve won many prizes and can make a shoe in duchesse silk that is as smooth to walk in as a sneaker,” Thulin adds. And when it comes to tiaras, Victoria will most probably choose the same tiara as Silvia did for her wedding: the wonderful cameo tiara, a wink to the Bernadotte family’s French roots.

More dads choose to stay at home
New facts and figures show that more Swedish fathers than ever before choose to take a paternity leave. Still, the men have a long way to go until they are even with women. “More men are taking paternity leave especially when it comes to the really young children, the ones under 2 years,” says Niklas Löfgren at Försäkringskassan (the Swedish Social Insurance Agency). In 2000 Swedish fathers used an average of 24 days of parent’s allowance. The days have increased steadily to reach 34 days at the end of last year, according to Försäkringskassan’s new statistics. “It’s a positive trend and a development we’re working towards,” Löfgren adds. When it comes to the older children, 2 to 8 year olds, the increase is not as great, from an average of 13 days during 2000 to 15 days last year. Why then this increase now? Part of it can be explained by the earmarked “father’s month” which was carried out for children born 2002 or later. When will Swedish fathers and mothers find equality in how many days they use? Well, looking at how long it took to come this far, it will probably take another nine years for it to even out.

Stieg’s partner about new book, “Pure slander”
Stieg Larsson’s partner Eva Gabrielsson does not agree with the characterization of Stieg in Kurdo Baksi’s new book “Min vän Stieg Larsson” (My friend Stieg Larsson). “It’s as if Kurdo’s trying to commit murder on Stieg’s character as a journalist—saying that he wasn’t serious, that he lied about facts and was not objective, that he, in short, didn’t do his job. I want to say that it is simply not true,” Gabrielsson said on Swedish TV. Baksi, on the other hand, says he hasn’t lied about Stieg Larsson. “He was not a very, very good journalist. He was a mediocre journalist and I think we can all agree on that.” At the time of his death at age 50 in 2004, Larsson was editor-in-chief of the Swedish anti-racist magazine Expo. He had also written three novels in a series—he wrote them for his own pleasure, returning home from his job in the evening and making no attempt to get them published until shortly before his death. The novels are today known as the Millennium Trilogy (“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” “The Girl Who Played With Fire” and “The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest”).