Only 4%-5% of all annual film releases in Norway are from Asia, Africa and Latin America – but at Films from the South, Oslo’s largest festival, unspooling for the 24th time from 9-19 October, all 240 screenings are from developing countries, this year more than 40 of them.
Having taken a record 25,000 admissions last year, the festival organised with theNorwegian Film Institute and Nordisk Film Kino will open with Argentinian director Damián Szifrón’s Cannes contender, Wild Tales [+]. The selection comprises new films by Oscar-winning Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki and Oscar-nominated Iranian director Asghar Farhadi. Among the festival guests are Argentinian filmmaker Daniel Burman and Brazilian director Karim Ainouz.
This year’s special guest, however, is the 85-year-old Chilean-French director Alejandro Jodorowsky, who will screen his latest film, The Dance of Reality [+] (which won the 2013 festival’s Silver Mirror), in a programme that includes some of his 1970s classics. He will also talk to US director Frank Pavich about Jodorowsky’s Dune [+] – the documentary that Pavich made about the director’s failed attempt to adapt US author Frank Herbert’s sci-fi classic Dune to the big screen, “the greatest film that was never made”.
On 11 October, the festival will celebrate the UN’s International Day of the Girl Child with films, debates and activities at Oslo’s Filmens Hus – screenings include Ethiopian directorZeresenay Mehari’s Difret, Norwegian directors Beathe Hofseth and Susann Østigaard’sLight Fly, Fly High (filmed in India), Australian filmmaker Rebecca Barry’s I Am a Girl(about six young girls from different parts of the world), and Danish director Berit Madsen’sSepideh [+] (about a girl from Iran).
Six international projects have been selected for the Sørfond (Foundation’s) Pitching Forum, scheduled to take place on 15 October at Filmens Hus, where the filmmakers will present their ideas to potential Norwegian producers, and eventually apply for support from the Fund. Financed by the Norwegian Foreign Ministry, and managed by the Norwegian Film Institute and Films from the South, the Sørfond has chipped in for the production of five films at the 2014 festival.