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Norwegian Film Institute supports three new television series

The Norwegian Film Institute has announced support for three new television drama series.

First up is State of Happiness (Lykkeland), to be directed by Petter Næss. Næss is known for his Oscar-nominated Elling (2001), selling 800,000 cinema tickets in Norway and who has since worked on more than fifty films and state plays.

State of Happiness is written by screenwriter Mette M. Bølstad, who has also written two other successful series – The Heavy Water War and Nobel, the latter winning this years Prix Europa for Best Mini-Series and was licenced to more than 190 countries by London’s DRG. State of Happiness describes the personal, political and social changes that took place in Stavanger during the first years of the Norwegian oil adventure. The series focuses on four young people, from the first Ekofisk oil field was discovered in 1969, till the international energy company Statoil was founded in 1972.

State of Happiness comes from NRK and the budget is around €10.1 million. The Norwegian Film Institute received €1.3 million in support from the Norwegian Film Institute.

The next series to receive funding is Almost Grown Up, produced by Lars Gudmestad for Feelgood Scene Film & TV and written by Birgitte Wegener. The series follows a group of adolescent friends, who have now got teenage children themselves and have to relate to their secret smoking, drinking under pressure, sexual debuts and pub crawling. The series will screen on TVNorge.

Last but not least is a dramedy called Helium. Written by Trond Morten Venasen and Morten Hovland, the series is about 12-year-old Martin and his first love, Dalia; when she seems captivated by Christopher, he and his friend Petter start a website to become popular. The series will be programmed on NRK Super.

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.