As talents are crossing borders, co-creating and co-working more, their needs should not be forgotten.
Nordic Genre Boost and Nordic Distribution Boost, Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize are some of the initiatives that former CEO Petri Kemppinen (2014-2019) is proud to have kick-started.
The primary purpose of Nordisk Film & TV Fond is to stimulate cross border collaborations in the Nordic region and to promote Nordic talent and works. How did the Nordic cooperation evolve under your time as CEO and what schemes did you initiate to contribute to this mandate?
Petri Kemppinen: I think we created new possibilities for both up-and-coming talent and to the more established talent - both to network and to receive higher amounts of funding if justified, based on the projects' circulation potential.
To promote circulation of Nordic films, the amount of funding for distribution was increased (from NOK 3 million to NOK 9 million) and slate funding - that now covers over 10 distributors - was initiated.
The Nordic Genre Boost scheme was started to develop projects and the networking of genre filmmakers and their distributors. Nordic Distribution Boost scheme was developed for producers and distributors of second or third time filmmakers.
The Fund also put more demand on cross-border distribution and marketing plans to producers applying for production funding across all genres.
Also, to recognise the dramatic growth in TV drama, we initiated the Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize for Best Nordic Screenwriting.
Can you cite a handful of films, documentaries and/or TV dramas that had a major impact on a Nordic and international level and some Nordic talents whose career kick-started when you were CEO?
PK: The Square by Ruben Östlund was in my eyes the major international breakthrough, breaking traditions and reaching out to new and younger audiences. Ali Abbasi took part in Nordic Genre Boost with The Border and that became his kick-start. Selma Vilhunen is another talent that came to international recognition, both in documentaries (Hobbyhorse Revolution) and fiction (Little Wing, Stupid Young Heart).
Concerning TV drama, there would be so many to mention, and there I go for the writers. To me Nobel stands out, with Mette M. Bølstad and Stephen Uhlander as writers. Feras Fayyad´s documentary Last Men in Aleppo was a kick-start for him. Playwright-actor Benedikt Erlingsson certainly made a huge directorial breakthrough with Woman at War. Adam Price, Amanda Kernell - there are so many to mention!
Do you have a special wish for the Nordic film & TV community as we enter a new decade?
Keep collaborating! I see there is more than before a shift of thinking national amongst the funding bodies. I understand this from the local market share perspective, but as talents are crossing borders, co-creating and co-working more, their needs should not be forgotten.