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Selma Vilhunen’s ‘Stupid Young Heart’ Wins Finnish Film Affair Prize

Selma Vilhunen’s “Stupid Young Heart” won the Work-in-Progress prize at the Finnish Film Affair, the industry forum running alongside the Helsinki International Film Festival.

“Stupid Young Heart” was presented in post-production at the Finnish Film Affair, where it was awarded a grant of 3000 euros ($3570). The grant is meant to be used for marketing expenses.

The movie is being produced by Elli Toivoniemi and Venla Hellstedt at Tuffi Films. International sales rights on the film are still available.

Vilhunen’s previous film, “Little Wing,” screened at the Finnish Film Affair last year and is nominated for a Nordic Council Film Prize. Toivoniemi’s documentary feature “Once I Was a Dragonfly” won the FFA award in 2015.

A coming-of-age drama, “Stupid Young Heart” was one of the 10 features presented at the Finnish Film Affair.

The jury, which included Jenny Cooney, member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Zsuzsi Bankuti of The Match Factory and Marge Liiske of Baltic Event/Tallin Film Festival, stated that the subject of “Stupid Young Heart” felt edgy, relevant and focused on the dilemma of making correct choices in a complex and contemporary world, both personally and morally.”

“Even though it is in the early stages of filming, the footage was excellent and the presentation and talent behind the project made us confident the film could reach international attention and would benefit from this prize,” the jury added.

Nearly 50 Finnish films and projects were presented to industry professionals from international outfits including Altitude, Wild Bunch, XYZ Films, Studiocanal, Lionsgate, Raven Banner, Westend Films, BBC Films, Indie Sales, New Europe Film Sales, AMP International and Films Boutique.

The Finnish Film Affair also hosted various networking events and roundtables with Aram Tertzakian (XYZ Films), Camille McCurry (United Agents), Justin Littman (Gotham Group) and Peter Trinh (ICM Partners), among others.

One of the highlights of the Finnish Film Affair was the tribute to Danish superstar Pilou Asbaek, whose recent credits include “Ghost in the Shell” and “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.” The actor received the inaugural award of The Nordic Flair, a newly launched program aimed at promoting and honoring Nordic talent.

The Helsinki International Film Festival wrapped Sunday with the screening of Ruben Ostlund’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner “The Square.” The festival welcomed more than 60,000 visitors and screened 175 feature films as well as 190 shorts.

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