An Ask MetaFilter question led to an amazing result. The question was:
Is there a pun in Hamlet’s first line in the movie Hamlet liikemaailmassa? The scene takes place in a kitchen where someone is slicing ham; Hamlet comes up, takes over, and cuts a large piece off for himself. As he does so he says something which is rendered in the English subtitles thus: “Ham … let me!”. The actual dialogue is given in Finnish, though. Is there a pun in the Finnish as well? What is it?
I responded “I am having no luck finding the quote in Finnish online, but I think the answer to your question is certainly ‘yes.’ It just doesn’t make sense that the translator would wantonly introduce an obvious pun.” But I was wrong, because (thanks to the detective work of Finnish MeFite keijo) it turns out that the Finnish text is “Kinkkua, anna minä,” which simply means ‘Ham, let me’ and (as keijo says) “is not funny in any way in Finnish without the context. However, it is a brilliant pun introduced by Kaurismäki and not the translator, since most of the viewers will be familiar with the English translation.” So Kaurismäki deliberately wrote an unfunny line in Finnish because of the effect it would produce in translation! I wonder if other writers have done this?