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Record Nordic films and docs selected at Sundance

29 NOVEMBER 2018

Queen Of Hearts, Dronningen / PHOTO: Rolf Konow

A total of six films from the Nordic region and four minority co-productions have been selected.

The competition feature entry Queen of Hearts and documentaries Cold Case Hammarskjold, The Magic Life of V and Stieg Larsson-The Man Who Played with Fire were all supported by Nordisk Film & TV Fond. 

The 28th Sundance Film Festival unspools January 24 to February 3, 2019 at Park City, Salt Lake City and Sundance Mountain Resort. Robert Redford’s Film Festival focusing on ground-breaking cinema narratives, has been a successful launchpad for many Nordic directors in the past, many of which are coming back in 2019 with their latest works. 

World Cinema Dramatic Competition
Twelve titles have been selected including Queen of Hearts and Koko-di koko-da, second features by Denmark’s May el-Toukhy (Long Story Short, The Legacy), and Sweden’s Johannes Nyholm (The Giant) respectively. 

Queen of Hearts produced by Nordisk Film Production, stars Trine Dyrholm as a woman who jeopardises both her career and her family when she seduces her teenage stepson (Gustav Lindh). El Toukhy co-wrote the script with Maren Louise Käehne.  Sales agent TrustNordisk said the film ‘caught great attention’ among world buyers at the last American Film Festival where a promo was shown.

Queen of Hearts opens March 2019 in Denmark. 

Koko-di koko-da is written/directed/produced by Johannes Nyholm who first attended Sundance with his multi-awarded short film Las Palmas in 2012.  His second feature tells of a couple, trying to find their way back to each other, and who encounter in the woods a sideshow artist and his shady entourage. The gang will terrorise them and lure them deeper into a maelstrom of psychological terror and humiliating slapstick.

In the main roles are Leif Edlund, Ylva Gallon, Peter Belli and Katarina Jacobson. The film is co-produced by Denmark’s Beofilm, with Paris-based Stray Dogs handling sales. The Swedish premiere is set for 2019.

Also competing in this section is the Brazilian film Divine Love by Gabriel Mascaro, co-produced by Denmark’s Snowglobe and Norway’s Mer Film, and Colombian film Monos by Alejandro Landes, co-produced by Snowglobe. 
Last year Gustav Möller’s The Guilty won the Audience award and Ísold Uggadóttir's And Breathe Normally  Best Director at Sundance’s World Dramatic competition. 

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Record Nordic films and docs selected at Sundance

Kok Di Koko Da / PHOTO: Stray Dogs

World Cinema Documentary Competition 
Twelve films are selected including the world premieres of the Danish film Cold Case Hammarskjöld by Mads Brügger, The Magic Life of V by Bulgarian-born Finnish director Tonislav Hristov, and the international premiere of Sweden’s Stieg Larsson, The Man Who Played with Fire by Henrik Georgsson.

With Cold Case Hammarskjöld, Brügger will return to Sundance for the third time. In 2010 he won the festival’s Grand Jury Prize for The Red Chapel and in 2012 his film The Ambassador screened in competition. With his usual innovative investigative style of ‘performative journalism’, Brügger and Swedish private investigator Göran Bjorkdahl try to solve the mysterious death of Dag Hammarskjold. Together, they return to the place in Africa where the former UN secretary general lost his life in a mysterious plane crash in 1961. In Zambia, Congo and South Africa, they encounter traces of evil that exceed their wildest imagination.

The film produced by Denmark’s Wingman Media is representing internationally by DR Sales. 

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Record Nordic films and docs selected at Sundance

Cold Case Hammarskjold / PHOTO: Tore Vollan

The Magic Life of V follows Veera, a young woman haunted by childhood traumas who tries to become more independent through live roleplaying. As she guides herself and her mentally-challenged brother through worlds of multiple roles and identities, witches and wizards, she finds the courage to face the demons of her own past and her abusive father's legacy.The film is produced by Hristov’s regular collaborators Kaarle Aho and Kai Nordberg of Finland’s Making Movies, in co-production with Denmark’s Kirstine Barfod Films and Bulgaria’s Soul Food. World sales are handled by Cats & Docs. 

Stieg Larsson, The Man Who Played with Fire is created by The Bridge’s concept director Henrik Georgsson and B-Reel producers Mattias Nohrborg and Fredrik Heinig. The film tells of the Millennium-trilogy author Stieg Larsson and his pioneering work of fighting right wing extremists and neo-Nazis, an obsession with fatal consequences. It opened in Swedish cinemas on September 28 via SF Studios. World sales are handled by The Match Factory. 

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Record Nordic films and docs selected at Sundance

Stieg Larsson / PHOTO: Per Jarl

Premiere Section
Sundance’s category for highly anticipated narrative films has 28 titles including the US remake of Susanne Bier’s After the Wedding directed by Bart Freundlich, the Norwegian biopic Sonja, The White Swan and German film Sunlit Night, co-produced by Norway’s Ape & Björn.  

Sonja-The White Swan will be Anne Sewitsky’s third Sundance attendance. Her debut film Happy, Happy won the festival’s Grand Jury Prize in 2011 and Homesick was in the World Dramatic competition in 2014.  The film tells the true story of Sonja Henie, one of the world's greatest athletes and the inventor of modern figure skating, who took Hollywood by storm in the 1930s, sacrificing everything to stay in the spotlight. In the title role is Ine Marie Wilmann.

The film based on a script by Mette M. Bølstad and Andreas Markusson is produced by Maipo Film. The Norwegian premiere is set for December 25, 2018. TrustNordisk handles world sales. 

The Spotlight section has Birds of Passage by Colombia's Ciro Guerra, co-produced by Denmark's Snowglobe. 

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Record Nordic films and docs selected at Sundance

Sonja / PHOTO: Jose Haro

A total of 112 feature length films from 33 countries were selected for Sundance’s preliminary programme.

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