Hannes Holm speaks out against SF Studios

Swedish director Hannes Holm has spoken out against the newly named production company SF Studios (formerly Svensk Filmindustri), claiming that too much of the budget was misappropriated.

Hannes Holm is known for directing A Man Called Ove, which was so successful it is now the third most successful film in Swedish film history and is credited with saving Swedish cinema in 2015, pushing Swedish film from 15% of the admissions to a less depressing 20%.

Swedish pubcaster SVT broke the news that upon the completion of A Man Called Ove, Hannes Holm wrote to the SF board in which he said:

I have never seen the likes of such a poorly managed company… I would rather work with a production company that has Donald Duck as CEO. In terms of budget, it was a normal Swedish budget. But they wanted to remove, for example, the cat which was a pretty important part of the book. I didn’t understand it until I found out that they took a large part of the budget for themselves. They took about 30% before filming even began. I was astounded when I heard about it.

It is normal for productions to take between 10% and 20%, with 20% being rather high. Though, for those of us who have seen the film, the cat does return to A Man Called Ove so Holm’s needs were met.

In response to Holm’s claims, Swedish Film Institute CEO Anna Serner said to Kulturnyheterna: “As things stand today, there are no rules for how much profit you can take… We must do our homework and revise the rules if necessary… Obviously it is upsetting when a company is careless with money.”

Hannes Holm is returning to television later this year with an adaptation of Dehli’s Most Beautiful Hands for SVT.

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.