As the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin drew to a close yesterday, a handful of Nordic films selected at the 65th Berlinale or introduced as pre-sales attracted buyers’attention, as well high profile TV dramas that made their first entry at the major A film festival.
Director Per Fly and actor Nikolaj Lie Kaas were some of the team members of DR’s Follow the Money (pictured) who introduced the financial crime series to audiences at the prestigious Haus der Berliner Festspiele. Piv Bernth, DR Head of Fiction said: “It was a great initiative from the Berlinale to open up for drama series. The screening went extremely well. The audience was really caught by the story, the visuals and the acting. We are happy and relieved that the world premiere could meet people’s expectations and that the teaser worked.”
DR Sales executive Helene Aurøwas also very pleased: “We had extremely good responses on Follow the Money and I’m negotiating with several buyers from the same territories. We were also pleased with the screening facilities and meeting spaces at the EFM and hope the TV Drama slot will become an established event at the Berlinale.”
On the feature film side, the EFM was busy although fewer deals leaked during the nine day trade event, mirroring the cautiousness of buyers in a shifting and uncertain market where negotiations were tempered by the low euro versus US dollar exchange rate.
Nordic films deals to date include:
TrustNordisk sold the Norwegian family film Operation Arctic to Germany (Telepool), France (Swift), Bulgaria (Pro Films), Estonia (Estinfilm) and Iran (Ro-In Entertainment).
On the pre-sales market, the Norwegian action-drama The Last King by Nils Gaup was acquired by Koch Media GmbH for German-speaking territories while The Model by hot upcoming Danish director Mads Matthiesen (Teddy Bear) was sold to France (AB Groupe), Poland (Kino Swiat), Korea (Scvene & Sound), Bulgaria (Pro Films) and Middle East (Gulf Film).
Bac Films International which was representing the Icelandic/Danish co-production Virgin Mountain by Dagur Kári closed deals with Benelux (September Films), Norway (Europafilm), Brazil (Imovision) and Colombia (Babilla Cine). The film which premiered at the Berlinale Special received very good reviews in the leading film trade magazines.
LevelK gained a lot of media and buyers’ attention from the Norwegian documentary Drone’s prestigious Cinema for Peace Award in Berlin (see other news) sold to Australia & New Zealand (Vandetta Films), the UK (Kaleidoscope Film), France (Zylo), Spain (Indigenius), Finland (YLE), former Yugoslavia (Tricontinental Ltd Co.) and Estonia (EESTI) and from Anders Thomas Jensen’s slapstick comedy Men & Chicken that opened last week at number one in Denmark.
Eyewell’s Michael Werner closed sales on the Estonia/Finnish WW2 drama 1944 to French speaking territories (Ninetyseven Productions) and Japan (Inter Film, Tetsuya Hasegawa), with several other offers pending including from Germany. The Icelandic crime series The Cliff Season 1 and 2 and Finnish series Nymphs were sold to Korea.
Documentary specialist Autlook Film Sales signed with Italy (Just Wanted) and Taiwan (IPA Asia) for the Swedish film The Ceremony, while the Danish film The Visit was picked up by Italy (iWonder) and Poland (Against Gravity) on top of a previous deal with the UK (Metrodome).
Wide Management’s Paul Bouchard, sales rep among others of the Swedish film My Skinny Sister was pleased with the audience and press reaction following the film’s Generation Kplus screening but deals were still pending on the film.
Yellow Affair and SF International were also expecting to announce sales in the coming weeks.