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A Record Number of European films during the Norwegian International Film Festival

Four Norwegian films will receive their world premiere during the 37th Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund, whose programme features a record number of European films. 70 % of the films are European productions, including the three great winners from this year’s Cannes festival.

– We are very happy for the appealing Norwegian films we have got for the main programme and the Children’s Film Fest, Programme Director Håkon Skogrand says. – It is also marvellous to be able to present the strongest European programme ever. As many as 50 of the 70 feature films in the official programme come from our own part of the world.

Håkon Skogrand is very pleased to get the three great winners from the Cannes competition programme for the main programme. – This is not something that happens every year and it’s great, the Programme Director says. – In addition, we have that very same festival’s opening film, Up, where the Norwegian title, Se opp, reflects the fact that dreams must be realised, something that they also do, in various ways, in many of our films.

According to Skogrand, it is fitting that this year’s opening and closing films stand in diametrical opposition to each other. – While the opening film, Upperdog, is sensitive and optimistic, the closing film, Rat Nights, reeks of brutal cynicism. As often as dreams are realised they are crushed. This is very evident in many of this year’s main programme films, Skogrand concludes.

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The Amanda Awards Ceremony

But the first central event of the festival, however, has to do with last year’s Norwegian film production. On Friday 21 August Festiviteten, the Haugesund Concert Hall, is filled with our national film industry and our own stars, who are going to walk the red carpet to enter the 25th Amanda Awards Ceremony. As many as 19 Amanda Awards will be presented during the anniversary show, which is transmitted live on TV 2, hosted by Sven Nordin and Dennis Storhøi.

– As the statuettes will be presented for the 25th time this year, it is a pleasure to declare that Amanda has become the most prestigious, visible and talked-about film award in Norway, Gunnar Johan Løvvik, Festival Director and Chairman of the Amanda Committee, states. – We look forward with great pleasure to celebrate the anniversary of Amanda together with the collective Norwegian film industry!

Side programmes

This year’s festival offers a French, a German and an Italian side programme, in addition to the Critics’ Week, Videorama and a special programme of short films.

An innovation this year is the side programme From Emden to Haugesund, which is based on a co-operative effort that the festival has started with a German film festival, International Filmfest Emden-Norderney. Three award-winning films from Emden will be screened in Haugesund. The director of Made in Deutschland, Hans-Erich Viet, and Luki Frieden, who made A Thousand Oceans, will be the festival’s guests.

To the French programme French Touch and the Children’s Film Fest programme 15+, director Sylvie Verheyde and actor William Wayolle come with their film Stella. The Italian side programme Cinema Italia will see the directors Marco Amenta, with La siciliana ribelle, and Federico Bondi, with Mar nero, come to Haugesund.

The international film critics Derek Malcolm, Ingeborg Bratoeva, Christian Monggaard and Matthieu Chéreau have selected the entries for the Critics’ Week, and will come to the festival to present them.

A Record Number of Participants for New Nordic Films

New Nordic Films, the Nordic film market, sees its 15th edition this year. New Nordic Films is visited by film professionals from all around Europe and from other parts of the globe, and the festival’s Nordic section will have a record number of participants. – More than 300 professionals from 25 countries will visit Haugesund. This confirms New Nordic Films’s position as the Nordic film industry’s largest and most important meeting place, Gyda Velvin Myklebust, responsible for New Nordic Films, says.

New Nordic films will be officially opened by His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon on Thursday 20 August. The opening films are Starring Maja by Teresa Fabik from Sweden, a world premiere, and the short film Litte Miss Eyeflap by Iram Haq. Both directors will be present, together with the actresses Zandra Andersson and Moa Silén from Starring Maja.

Stavanger and Sandnes

For the second year running, the Norwegian International Film Festival extends an arm to its neighbouring cities to the south. In addition to the Norwegian films, films from the Children’s Film Fest and the side programmes will be screened for audiences in Stavanger and Sandnes from 27 August to 1 september. For more information: FILM WEB

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