Norwegian Film Institute Finds its Funny Bone

Primus Motor

Scandinavian comedy is one of the most loved genres by domestic and international audiences. In issue eight of our magazine, we found that comedy was the number one choice amongst Norwegians, so it seems only fitting that the Norwegian Film Institute has granted NOK 23.1 million to new features by Norwegian directors (as well as funding for docos and video games).

Here’s an overview of each of these films, as provided by the Norwegian Film Institute


The Norwegian Film Institute has chipped in €2.7 million (NOK 23.1 million) for new features by Norwegian directors Rune Denstad Langlo, Arild Fröhlich, Hanne Larsen, adding production funding for four documentaries and development support for eight video games

Primus Motor

Langlo has himself scripted Primus Motor, his third feature about a racist, almost bankrupt hotel owner in the mountains, who wants to open a refugee centre to save the economy. Now he needs the permit from the Directorate of Immigration, but the first group of émigrés has arrived to cause absolute chaos. Most recently signing five episodes for Norwegian TV2 series Acquitted (Frikjent), Langlo will start filming on 14 April for Sigve Endresen-Motlys.

Grand Hotel

After two Doctor Proctor features, including Doctor Proctor’s Fart Powder (Doktor Proktors prompepulver), which became No 3 on last year’s national charts, Frøhlich will film Megan Gallagher’s story about a vain alcoholic and a 10-year-old boy suffering from Tourette’s disorder (with multiple physical and vocal tics), who are forced to spend a week together at the Grand Hotel. They have one thing in common: they are both difficult to like. Karin Julsrud will produce for 4½ Fiksjon.


For her first feature Larsen has adapted Norwegian author Stein Erik Lunde’s novel Eggg, with Kathrine Valen Zeiner – the story of an 11-year-old boy, who has an extreme allergy to eggs, which he tries to keep secret to new friends. However, Aunt Doris, his babysitter, keeps serving him eggs, so he plans to take revenge – on Christmas Eve. The Synnøve Hørsdal production for Maipo Film will be ready for Nordisk Film Distribusjon to release in October 2016.

Four documentaries

The four documentaries, which have received support from the institute, include

Til månen med bestefar. Dir: David Alræk. Prod: Elisabeth Kleppe, for Sjau. Alræk has always been inspired by his grandfather, and when he is admitted to a nursing home, diagnosed with dementia, he fears for his life. But grandfather does not give up.

Holleja. Dirs: Arne Nævra, Torgeir Beck Lande. Prod: Arne Nævra, for Naturbilder. A poetic depiction of nature, with mythical elements and references to Norwegian history of art and literature.

MonaLisa Story. Dir: Jessica Nettelbladt. Prods: Leoni Production-Sweden, Cecilie Bjørnaraa, Nettelbladt, for True Fiction-Norway. MonaLisa’s eight-year fight to return from drug addiction to life, love and her children.

Twisters. Dir: Hanna Heilborn. Prods: Malin Hüber, Tobias Janson, for Story-Sweden, Anita Rehoff Larsen, for Sant & Usant-Norway. A young girl is enthusiastic about cheerleading, while her hippie parents have no understand for the sport.

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.