Eight first-time directors in Norway’s film spring

While 34 new Norwegian films were released last year, to control 24.4% of the local market, 2015 is likely to be closer to the average of 25. “Still, it will be unusual: eight of the first ten spring premieres are signed by first-time directors,” observed Sindre Guldvog, managing director of the Norwegian Film Institute.

Half of the films are made by female directors, while six have female producers, includingStaying Alive – launched on 16 January – which qualifies for both: Charlotte Blom’s feature debut was staged by Synnøve Hørsdal, for Maipo Film. Starring Agnes Kittelsen, Anders Baasmo Christiansen and Linn Skåber, the comedy, which is also scripted by Blom, is about 34-year-old Marianne, who one day discovers that her boyfriend is having an affair with a young colleague. Supported by her best friend, she wants revenge and realises that cosiness is overrated; having fun is all that matters.

The Disappearing Illusionist, the first feature by Bobbie Peers, whose Sniffer won the Palme d’Or for Best Short at Cannes in 2006, will be launched on 27 March. Bjørn Olaf Johannessen wrote the story, which is based on a real-life event: when German illusionistDirk Ohm visited Grong in 2003, the whole village was searching for a missing woman, Maria; Ohm took part and gradually fell in love with her, without having ever met her.August Diehl, Sara Hjort Ditlevsen, Jørgen Langhelle and Alexandra Rapaport star in the Maria Ekerhovd production for Mer Film.

Three of the upcoming premieres are documentaries: Tonje Hessen Schei’s award-winning Drone, about the CIA’s secret unmanned-vehicle war in Pakistan and how it could influence future warfare (staged by Lars Løge and Johnny Holmvåg, of Flimmer Film – 27 February); Leiv Igor Devold’s The Accidental Rock Star, about a celebrated member of the band Kaizers Orchestra, who had never dreamed of achieving this kind of lifestyle (produced by Ingvil Giske, of Medieoperatørene – 13 March); and Aslaug Holm’sBrothers, about the close relationship between two brothers aged 14 and 11 who live in Oslo (from Tore Buvarp, of Fenris Film – 27 March).


From Cineuropa

Emma Vestrheim

Emma Vestrheim is the editor-in-chief of Cinema Scandinavia. Originally from Australia, she is now based in Bergen, Norway, and attends major Nordic film festivals to conduct interviews and review new films.