Danes Are Coming To Watch; Put Buying On Back Burner

Danish film major Pathe-Nordisk says it will make virtually no effort to pick up product in Berlin this year. However, the company’s Ellen Birgitte Riis will be in town – to go sightseeing.

Egmont Film’s Michael Berentsen is likely to go, but all acquisitions for the Scandi marketplace will be made by Goran Sjostedt, working out of Egmont Audio Visual Group’s Swedish division.

Torben Villesen, distrib topper of Dansk Filmindustri, a subsid of Swedish giant Svensk Filmindustri, plans to go but won’t bring along any funds. Villesen, however, values the opportunity to watch movies, establish new contacts and consolidate old ones.

If the participation of Denmark’s majors seems modest, several Danish independents are monitoring Berlin on the chance that the right sort of arty gem or overlooked offbeat item will sell tickets in Copenhagen. However, rising costs of acquisition and distribution call for a note of caution among the indies.

Metronome, which is fast approaching major status, seems likely to have the advantage among Danish buyers. Exhib topper Anne Fabricius-Bjerre will be looking for quality fare and art films for her Dagmar Bio multiplex. Last year she, among others, put a rope on Pedro Almodovar’s “Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!” This year the Metronome purse strings will be adjusted in accordance with desirability of Berlin product. Also present will be producer Mads Egmont Christensen of Metronome Prods., which has pics unspooling at the fest.

A perplex-ing situation

Influential art exhib/distrib Peter Refn of Camera Film will be in Berlin, motivated to buy pics suited for his Grand six-plex. Refn nevertheless finds that current conditions warrant caution; in fact, Refn didn’t close any deals in Berlin last year. Camera has, however, obtained Berlin pics such as “Camille Claudel” and “The Little Thief” in years past.

Karne Film/Per Holst Film’s production-distrib topper Per Hoist, of “Pelle The Conquerer” fame, plans to respond to an invite from EFD0, an organization offering subsidies to distributors of Euro pics.

Majken Gilmartin and Birgitte Skov of distrib-exhib firm Delta/Bellevue will be looking for niche films and cultivating contacts. Christian Braad Thomsen of Kollektiv Film won’t miss Berlin, though he doesn’t expect to pick up any films unless he stumbles across the right thing. And after having spent time launching the Greyfriars cinema in Odense, Ole Nielsen and Jorgen B. Christensen will be at the fest to reestablish their Cinnamon distrib firm.

Both Danish national tv networks will, as usual, be in Berlin. Pubcaster DR/TV’s Jorgen Oldenburg will mainly scout with future acquisitions in mind, whereas TV2’s Peter Voldsgaard is actively looking to buy pics showing promise. Last year Voldsgaard bought several titles, including Canadian pic “Paper Wedding.”

A no-go for Bo

Incoming Danish Film Institute topper Bo Christensen hasn’t been officially appointed yet; leading the DFI delegation will be chief aide Mona Jensen and foreign chief Lissy Bellaiche. Also on hand will be production consultants Georg Metz and Hans Hansen. New DFI information chief Jesper Andersen will be in town to prepare for next year, when Denmark will run the joint Scandi stand.

Denmark brings seven pics to Berlin in ’91, none in competition but still an improvement on last year. “Dance Of The Polar Bears” is in the Kinderfilmfest and “The Birthday Trip” and “Giselle” have made it into the Panorama sidebar. The pics’ respective helmers, Birger Larsen, Lone Scherfig and Anne Wivel, will make appearances. Further titles at the market are “Sirup,” “The Man Who Wanted To Be Guilty,” “Cherry Blossom Ballad” and “Spring Tide.”

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