Nordic Film Market showcases local pics

Market screens 20 new regional titles

The Nordic Film Market, which marks its 12th edition at this year’s Goteborg Film Festival, screens around 20 new regional titles specially selected for their ability to travel internationally, says market head Cia Edstrom.

The market, restricted to 250 badge- holders, also runs a very popular works-in-progress section that allows festival programmers, buyers and sales agents to get a look at movies that are due to be released in the region during the course of the year — giving them a vital head start.

The mart’s timing just before the Berlinale — this year it unspools Feb. 3-6 — allows industry professionals to review what the Nordic countries have to offer, begin talks and, often, seal deals a week or so later in Berlin’s European Film Market.

“The Nordic Film Market is a very good place for networking; the size is perfect for that,” says Edstrom. “A lot of buyers think it is great to come here before Berlin. It is easier to meet people. Berlin is quite stressful for everybody because it is a very big market.”

Although market screening auds are limited, there is free access to market events such as networking meetings and industry seminars to the 1,800 industry attendees at the festival.

The market is helped by the reputation that Goteborg has built up more than 30 years as Sweden’s leading film industry event, with a strong business and professional focus.

The phenomenal interest in Nordic, particularly Swedish, crime thrillers has been a boost for the mart in recent years.

Last year, it was the first festival to screen Daniel Espinosa’s “Snabba Cash,” launching an international sales career that quickly morphed into a Hollywood bidding war for English-language remake rights.

The festival has also shone an early light on other Nordic success stories, such as Danish directors Tobia Lindholm’s and Michael Noer’s prison drama “R,” which picked up the festival’s main prize, the Dragon Award, last year.

Market special events this year include a Nordic Crime Section, including Icelandic director Olaf de Fleur’s “City State,” a thriller with four characters bent on revenge and mutual destruction.

There will also be a seminar on distribution strategies for buyers of both Nordic commercial and arthouse movies.

Edstrom finds it hard to explain why there seems to be such a wave of new young directors — like Andreas Ohman, whose “Simple Simon” was a work in progress last year and is now Sweden’s entry for the foreign-language Oscar — but says the market targets emerging talent as much as it can.

Hot pics in the mix
A sampling of titles at the Nordic Film Market

She Monkeys” (Apflickorna)
Director: Lisa Aschan
Producer: Atmo Produktion
Logline: Power games between two teenage girls
Sales company: none

“Rebounce” (Frit Fald)
Director: Heidi Maria Faisst
Producer: Zentropa Entertainments
Logline: Seeking the love of her convict mother, a teenage girl slips into a dangerous world of parties, drugs, easy money and men.
Sales company: TrustNordisk

Director: Amir Chamdin
Producer: Chamdin & Stohr Filmproduktion
Logline: Biopic on one of Sweden’s greatest music legends, Cornelis Vreeswijk
Sales company: Svensk Filmindustri

“Happy Happy” (Sykt LYKKELIG)
Director: Anne Sewitsky
Producer: Maipo
Logline: A comedy about infidelity
Sales company: TrustNordisk
Nordic Film Market: Works in Progress

“Teddy Bear”
Director: Mads Matthiesen
Producer: SF Film Prod., Beofilm
Logline: A 38-year-old bodybuilder who still lives at home goes to Thailand in search of love and to overcome his shyness around women. Sales company: none

Director: Martin Zandvliet
Producer: Koncern Film
Logline: Biopic of 1950s comic Dirch Passer
Sales company: Level K

“The Crown Jewels”
Director: Ella Lemhagen
Producer: Filmlance Intl. & Nordisk Film and TV Fond
Logline: A young woman accused of murder tells police her fascinating life story.
Sales company: Trust Nordisk

Iceland & Denmark
Director: Runar Runarsson
Producer: Zik Zak Filmworks
Logline: An isolated retired janitor carries out mercy killing on terminally ill wife.
Sales company: Trust Nordisk

Director: Ville Jankeri
Producer: Kinotar Oy
Logline: Three happy-go-lucky unemployed men enjoy summer’s day on the town.
Sales company: none

Also in Fest Traveler: Goteborg Intl. Film Festival:
Nordic dragon rises

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