New Finnish film projects go to development clinic

Unspooling from 23-25 September, Helsinki’s third Finnish Film Affair will present a record number of 19 new films and 17 upcoming projects to the international contingency of 66 sales agents, festival programmers, distributors, TV buyers and members of the press who have registered for the industry event.

For the first time, another ten projects by first- and second-time directors will be discussed at a Project Development Clinic, where they will receive feedback from international industry experts on script development, co-production funding, marketing, packaging and sales.

“The Finnish Film Affair was launched not only to market Finnish films, but also to provide tools to allow filmmakers to reach international audiences,” explained festival director Sara Norberg, of the Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy, which stages the event with local partners.

“We will focus on the critical factors during the development phase that have an impact on the international sales and distribution potential of the film. The idea is not only to present the best that Finland has to offer, but also to nurture projects coming through the pipeline,” she added.

New films include recent Finnish festival performers: Leena Kilpeläinen’s documentary The Voice of Sokurov (Locarno); J-P Valkeapää’s road movie They Have Escaped [+] (Venice, Toronto); Dome Karukoski’s The Grump [+] (Toronto); and Leif Lindblom’s Raspberry Boat Refugee, which won the Nordic Film Award at Haugesund.

Finnish directors Klaus HäröSelma VilhunenMarkku LehmuskallioJoonas Berghälland Petri Kotwica will pitch their upcoming features at the affair, where UK producerSimon Perry will chair a panel on “How to Develop a Film That Travels”.

The Helsinki Film Festival, which runs for the 27th time from 18-28 September, has programmed 260 films (including 80 shorts) across 12 venues and will also show the five nominees for the Nordic Council Film Prize.

via 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.