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Annual Report 2023

Annual Report 2023 © NFTVF, Yellow1

Nordisk Film & TV Fond is a pan-Nordic fund whose objective is to promote the Nordic audiovisual industry through support schemes and initiatives.

The operation of the Fund is per 31.12.23 based on an agreement between 22 parties: the Nordic Council of Ministers, 5 Nordic film institutes and 16 Nordic media companies. The parties finance our annual budget, which in 2023 was NOK 138,931,304 based on a five-year agreement for the period 2020-2024.

Mission and strategy
Nordisk Film & TV Fond contributes to an increased quality of Nordic productions at an international level, and an increased distribution of Nordic films, documentaries, and series in our region. We do this by top-up financing and promoting Nordic productions, as well as by financing dubbing of children’s films and Nordic distribution. All support forms have a special focus on children and youth.

We participate in strengthening Nordic content overall and in the region’s creative talent development. Among the Fund’s long-running industry initiatives are events that promote Nordic bridgebuilding between upcoming and established professionals (Nordic Talents) and collaboration between creatives in all Nordic countries (Nordic Script).

We provide top-up financing for projects of high quality with potential significant audience reach, primarily in the Nordics, but also internationally. In the evaluation of a project applying for production funding, overall quality factors, such as diversity and originality, are considered side by side with the project’s Nordic audience potential described in plans and documented in distribution agreements.

The Fund actively initiates and participates in pan-Nordic and international industry discussions. We reach out globally through our online newsletter, which weekly publishes 3-6 articles with Nordic industry focus. To join our newsletter: CLICK HERE.

The Fund works for a strong, green, and socially sustainable Nordic industry in accordance with the vision (Vision 2030) presented by the Nordic Council of Ministers: CLICK HERE.

Success criteria
We evaluate our success yearly by comparing the results of the supported projects against our expectations – through indicators such as admissions, sales, ratings, festival results, impact, and debate. We collect statistical information, feedback from applicants, and insights from the Fund's partners to reflect upon trends and changes. We also commission external evaluations of our overall activity.

  • NFTVF © Torleif Hauge
    PHOTO: Torleif Hauge

CEO: Liselott Forsman
Senior Advisor Legal & Strategy: Lise Løwholm
Senior Advisor Fiction: Torleif Hauge
Senior Advisor Documentary: Karolina Lidin
Web Editor/System Admin: Mathias Kallum Ferre
Economy Controller: Salma Reiermark Karoliussen (until June 2023)
Accounting & Administrative Officer: Phuong Hoang Nguyen (from August 2023)
Intern: Alina Huldén (from September 2023)

2023 was a year of new co-production alliances, green collaboration models, and astonishing Nordic productions. It was also a challenging year, especially for the drama series industry. The world faced unstable economic conditions with high inflation, and the global streaming market reached its saturation point. The era of “Peak TV” was definitively over. Viaplay announced layoffs, cutbacks, and international exits in July, having expanded in Europe and to the USA shortly before. Series commissioning slowed down in the Nordics and elsewhere.

In 2023 two broadcaster alliances were launched to ensure top drama quality through co-production. TV 2 (Denmark), TV 2 (Norway) and TV4 (Sweden) launched the Scandi Alliance, and the Nordic N12 pubcasters DR, NRK, RÚV, SVT and Yle formed the New8 with German ZDF, Dutch NPO and Belgian VRT. Getting stronger together is surely a good strategy when financing is tough, audiences are offered global content 24/7, and only the remarkable stand out. Collaboration is vital and we also must keep up our strong support systems to ensure high quality productions and a diverse and renewing Nordic industry.

Nordic titles made an international impact in 2023, and hooked viewers too, even hard-to-get young adults. Norwegian series were especially bold in introducing new forms of narration. The Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize for outstanding writing went to Kenneth Karlstad for his energetic series Kids in Crime, created for TV 2 Norway. The NRK series Power Play (Makta) brought writers Johan Fasting, Kristin Grue and Silje Storstein Best Series, and composer Kåre Vestrheim Best Music awards at Canneseries. The series investigates the 70s’ domestic politics in Norway in a daring form that breaks the 4th wall.

The Danish DR series Prisoner (Huset), created by Kim Fupz Aakeson, renewed the prison genre in such a convincing way that it was awarded Best Drama Series at Prix Italia, while the multifaceted SVT thriller series Blackwater (Händelser vid vatten), based on Kerstin Ekman’s classic crime novel, was awarded the Best Miniseries prize at Prix Europa.

  • Kids In Crime© Einar Film
    Kids In Crime
    PHOTO: Einar Film
  • Prisoner © Adam Wallensten 1
    PHOTO: Adam Wallensten 1
  • Power Play© November Film
    Power Play
    PHOTO: November Film
  • Blackwater© Apple Tree Productions
    PHOTO: Apple Tree Productions

Nordic audiences kept coming back to cinema theatres, also to watch domestic films. The leap was biggest in Iceland, where box office numbers were up by 32.5% compared to 2022. In Sweden, numbers were up by 8% and reached 11.2 million. The Norwegian, Finnish and Danish populations are only about 55% of the Swedish one, but the countries’ cinema ticket sale followed close after. In Denmark, 10 million tickets were sold in 2023 (a slight drop from 2022). Ticket sales in Norway were up 6.7% since 2022 to 9.3 million and in Finland up 24%, with 7.2 million tickets sold. Norway reached the biggest domestic ticket share (27%), followed by Denmark (25%), Finland (23%) Sweden (17%) and Iceland (17%). In Iceland the number almost doubled from the 9.25% share in 2022.

Some features that attracted audiences to domestic films, were also highly awarded. Finnish Aki Kaurismäki’s sympathetic love story Fallen Leaves (Kuolleet lehdet) won the hearts of international critics and domestic audiences alike. The film premiered in Cannes, where it received the Jury Prize. It was also the 4th most watched film in Finland in 2023, falling short only to Barbie, Oppenheimer and Super Mario. Another gentle comedy, Icelandic director Elfar Adalstein's philosophical Summerlight… and Then Comes the Night, won the Valhalla Award for Best Nordic Film in Santa Barbara. The funny and heartwarming Norwegian film Listen Up! (Hør her’a!) by Kaveh Tehrani received the Children’s and Youth Film Prize at Nordic Film Days Lübeck.

Two Danish period dramas based on cruel historical events made a strong impact in 2023. The truly epic film The Promised Land (Bastarden), directed by Nicolaj Arcel, tells a brutal story about an 18th century settler. It premiered in Venice and won three European Film Awards: Mads Mikkelsen received Best Actor, Rasmus Vidbæk Best Cinematographer, and Kicki Ilander the Best Costume Designer award. The Nordic Council Film Prize 2023 went to writer Anna Neye, director Frederikke Aspöck and producers Pernille Munk Skydsgaard, Nina Leidersdorff and Meta Louise Foldager Sørensen for Empire (Viften). The film is a grim, witty and playful analysis of Denmark’s colonial past in the West Indies.

There was also a strong Nordic presence at the 2023 Academy Awards, as Swedish Ruben Östlund’s 2022 Palme d’Or winner Triangle of Sadness competed in three categories (Best Film, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay), and Danish Simon Lereng Wilmont’s Sundance winner A House Made of Splinters (Et hus af splinter) in the documentary category.

Another documentary that was well noted in 2023 is the Swedish And the King Said, What a Fantastic Machine, by Maximilien Van Aertryck and Axel Danielsson. The film that discusses the role of cameras throughout history, won the Creative Vision Award at Sundance, the Best FutureWave Feature in Seattle, and the Cinema Vision 14plus Award in Berlin. These prizes evaluate new insights, visions, and young audience appeal, all essential for the future success of Nordic productions.

  • Fallen Leaves© Sputnik, Bufo
    Fallen Leaves
    PHOTO: Sputnik, Bufo
  • Listen Up! © Courtesy NIFFH, Motlys
    Listen Up!
    PHOTO: Courtesy NIFFH, Motlys
  • Summerlight And Then Comes The Night © David Williamson
    Summerlight And Then Comes The Night
    PHOTO: David Williamson
  • The Promised Land © The Promised Land© TrustNordisk
  • Empire© Linda Wassberg
    PHOTO: Linda Wassberg
  • Triangle of Sadness© Courtesy SF Studios
    Triangle of Sadness
    PHOTO: Courtesy SF Studios
  • A House Made Of Splinters © Final Cut For Real
    A House Made Of Splinters
    PHOTO: Final Cut For Real
  • And the King said what a Fantastic Machine © Belle Delphine
    And the King said what a Fantastic Machine
    PHOTO: Belle Delphine

The Fund’s 2023 applications indicate what the future might bring. Family stories are still popular, but we now see less of the traditional Nordic theme “bad parenting”. Family stories are getting more complex. Identity issues are often dealt with in stories featuring multicultural families. Upcoming Sámi filmmakers are changing their industry’s focus from near-history arenas to strong, contemporary stories in multiple genres.

Nordic productions are still inspired by well-known IP’s, but even more often by real life persons (often in films) and by events close to our times (often in series), such as the early 2000s Pirate Bay story (series), the 2001 tragic Holmlia murder (film and a series), Lars Norén’s disastrous 1999 prison project (series), and Nordic UN soldiers in Bosnia in the 1990s (series). Especially in Sweden, actual people’s lives are often fictionalised; from business mogul Jan Stenbeck (series) and pop star Per Gessle (film) to swimmer Sally Bauer (film), not to forget the loner Karl-Göran Persson, who spent his life building a fortress for his whole village, just in case of war (film).

To understand our restless world, our industry still looks back a lot, but in fiction the new stories have moved from past centuries and World War 2 arenas to our Nordic near history. Upcoming documentaries are covering current human-interest aspects and looking at complex international issues with the perspective of our recent history. The Swedish 12-part series 1 Holy Land (Israel Palestine i svensk TV 1959-1993) investigates the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through SVT’s 1959-1993 news archives, while the story of the Finnish 6-part series Untold Artic Wars – The Cold War starts in 1944. A growing number of documentary series receive Fund support. Some complex themes need longer formats.

When looking at the total number of the Fund’s top-financing supports, female producers are in a clear majority in drama series and documentaries, while a higher number of male producers get film support. Among writers and directors, the male dominance is evident. We had expected this gap to decrease in 2023, but unfortunately it seems to have grown. This motivates us now to study gender differences between the countries in our region.

Since 2021, the Fund’s theme years have mobilised the Nordic industry around vital issues. The 2023 theme year Nordic Green activated the Nordic industry to work together for a greener region. During the kick-off summit in Berlin, co-hosted by the Fund and the Nordic Film Commissions, the green national strategies were co-ordinated and discussed on a pan-Nordic basis. The active participants were key decision-makers and green experts from Nordic film institutes, the NFC, public and private broadcasters, and production company associations. After the summit the Fund founded the Nordic Green Action Group, which continues the co-ordination and the concrete pan-Nordic work on green trainings, pledges, and standards. The Fund installed a Nordic Green Data Base online in late 2023.

  • Nordic Green © NFTVF , Yellow1
    Nordic Green
    PHOTO: NFTVF , Yellow1

As the year 2023 started, few people in our industry discussed AI, and when it ended, everyone did. By then, most of us had tested ChatGPT and followed the US writers and actors strikes. For years, tech experts have warned us against ignoring the AI paradigm shift. Now legislation is moving, but way slower than AI develops. Hence, we are facing new challenging changes that we should collaborate around. The Fund’s next theme year will focus on AI, but this is stuff for our next annual report.

I ended my 2022 text with a wish for peace in Ukraine. As this devastating war continues, and a new violent war started in 2023, my wish is now for peace both in Ukraine and in Gaza.

  • CEO Liselott Forsman© Nordisk Film & Tv Fond, Birgit Solhaug
    CEO Liselott Forsman
    PHOTO: Nordisk Film & Tv Fond, Birgit Solhaug

2023 was a more or less normal year for feature films in theatres. The “Barbenheimer” phenomenon was a great kickoff for the cinema year, but Nordic films have also done well.

Films and drama series previously supported by the Fund made a mark last year.

The Danish film The Promised Land (Bastarden), directed by Nikolaj Arcel and starring Mads Mikkelsen, has received raving reviews, and has won a number of prizes both in Denmark and the rest of the world, among them three Europan Film Awards.

In 2023, a number of action-packed Nordic films combined Nordic and international talent, among them the Swedish Stockholm Bloodbath, directed by Mikael Håfström, the Icelandic film Operation Napoleon (Napóleonsskjölin), directed by Óskar Thór Axelsson, and the Norwegian horror comedy There’s Something in the Barn, directed by Magnus Martens. Horror seems to be a popular genre, especially in Norway and Finland. Hanna Bergholm’s psychological horror film Hatching (Pahanhautoja) travelled around Europe and beyond.

  • The Promised Land © Henrik Ohsten
    The Promised Land
    PHOTO: Henrik Ohsten
  • Stockholm Bloodbath© Kristof Galgoczi Nemeth 4
    Stockholm Bloodbath
    PHOTO: Kristof Galgoczi Nemeth 4
  • Operation Napoleon © Juliette Rowland, Sagafilm
    Operation Napoleon
    PHOTO: Juliette Rowland, Sagafilm
  • There's Something in the Barn © 74 Nisser
    There's Something in the Barn
    PHOTO: 74 Nisser
  • Hatching © Silva Mysterium
    PHOTO: Silva Mysterium

The Danish film Empire (Viften), directed by Frederikke Aspöck, was awarded the 2023 Nordic Council Film Prize. The film is a critical, serious and absurdly funny analysis of Denmark’s colonial past in the West Indies. It was written by Anna Neye, who plays the leading character.

Kids in Crime, which won the 2023 Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize (the screenwriting award) for a series, is a raunchy, dynamically told story with a serious topic. The series was written and directed by Kenneth Karlstad, and produced by TV 2 Norway.

  • Empire © Meta Film, Linda Wassberg
    PHOTO: Meta Film, Linda Wassberg
  • Kids in Crime © Alvilde Horjen Naterstad
    Kids in Crime
    PHOTO: Alvilde Horjen Naterstad

Nordic drama series made a strong impact in international forums. At Prix Italia, the Danish Prisoner (Huset), created by Kim Fupz Aakeson, won the award for Best Series. At Prix Europa, the Swedish series Blackwater (Händelser vid vatten) was awarded the Best Miniseries prize. The series is based on Kerstin Ekman’s classic crime novel. It was written by Maren Louise Käehne and Karin Arrhenius and directed by Mikael Marcimain.

In Berlin, another Prix Europa prize went to a Nordic series, as the Norwegian Power Play (Makta) received the Special Commendation. This Norwegian series also won the Best Series award at the Cannesseries 2023. The series is created by Johan Fasting, Kristin Grue and Silje Storstein, and deals with the power play within the Norwegian Labour Party in the 1970s. With an exciting style, in which the past and present blend seamlessly, and scenes in which the “fourth wall” is removed. Yngvild Sve Flikke was conceptual director of the series.

Two examples of well-received drama series are the Swedish The Detective from Beledweyne (Detektiven från Beledweyne), created by Aron Levander and directed by Finnish Zaida Bergroth, and the successful Icelandic dramedy series As Long As We Live (Svo lengi sem vi∂ lifum), created by Anita Briem, who also plays the lead.

The Finnish series Estonia, with Måns Månsson as conceptual director, attracted a lot of attention as it premiered in late 2023. The series was penned by main writer Miikko Oikkonen, and follows three persons which, each in their own way, got involved in the tragic accident after it had occurred, which provided the series with an exciting perspective.

  • Prisoner © Adam Wallensten
    PHOTO: Adam Wallensten
  • Blackwater © Apple Tree Productions
    PHOTO: Apple Tree Productions
  • Power Play © Motlys, Novemberfilm, NRK
    Power Play
    PHOTO: Motlys, Novemberfilm, NRK
  • The Detective from Beledweyne © Niclas Maupoix
    The Detective from Beledweyne
    PHOTO: Niclas Maupoix
  • As Long as We Live © Glassriver
    As Long as We Live
    PHOTO: Glassriver
  • Estonia © Fisher King
    PHOTO: Fisher King

The number of applications remained nearly unchanged compared to the year 2022. There were still many drama series applications compared to the pre-pandemic years, in spite of major changes in the industry. Viaplay changed their strategy and suspended much of their drama production. Many broadcasters had to consider tightening their budgets. The effects will probably appear in 2024, since many of the drama productions were already underway.

One trend is that many of the stories are based on renowned persons, historical events or a widely known IP. Examples of this are major drama series like the Icelandic Vigdís by Björn Hlynur Haraldsson and Tinna Hrafnsdóttir, about the former Icelandic president; the Norwegian So Long Marianne, about Marianne Christine Stang Ihlen, Leonard Cohen’s Norwegian sweetheart; the Swedish Faithless (Trolösa) by Tomas Alfredson, based on Ingmar Bergman’s Faithless; and The Pirate Bay by Jens Sjögren, which tells the story of the founding of The Pirate Bay. We see the same trend in feature films. Finnish The Summer Book by Charlie McDowell is a film adaptation of the world-renowned Finnish novel written by Tove Jansson, Gyllene Tider is about the Swedish pop phenomenon Per Gessle and his band Gyllene Tider, and the Norwegian Stargate by Ida Sagmo Tvedte is based on the novel “Stargate. A Christmas Tale”, written by Ingvild H. Rishøi.

The Fund supported several good productions related to Sámi culture, among them the film Biru Unjárga by Egil Pedersen, the series The Wedding Party – A Countdown to Disaster (Heajastallan) by Pål Jackman, and the yoik musical Árru, with a screenplay co-written by Johan Fasting and director Elle Sofe Sara.

These are some of the many Fund-supported films and series, from all corners of the Nordics, which we are looking forward to with great anticipation.

Throughout 2023, Nordic documentaries supported by Nordisk Film & TV Fond took centre stage at international festivals worldwide. Already in January, Swedish And the King Said, What a Fantastic Machine by Maximilien Van Aertryck and Axel Danielsson premiered at Sundance Film Festival, winning the World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Creative Vision.

In the spring, many notable films were presented at CPH:DOX, among them Norwegian titles Songs of Earth (Fedrelandet) by Margreth Olin, Praying for Armageddon by Tonje Hessen Schei, the Danish Theatre of Violence (Børnesoldat for retten) by Lukasz Konopa and Emil Langballe, and the Finnish The Last Seagull by Tonislav Hristov. All the above continued their international festival journey to much acclaim and many awards. Many of them also made their way into cinema circulation in the Nordics – a highlight among them Swedish The Gullspång Miracle (Miraklet i Gullspång) by Maria Fredriksson – premiering in April at Tribeca Film Festival and continuing to mesmerise sizable Nordic cinema audiences.

  • Fantastic Machine© Plattform Produktion, Alexander Tikhomirov
    Fantastic Machine
    PHOTO: Plattform Produktion, Alexander Tikhomirov
  • Songs of Earth© Dag Asle Mykløen
    Songs of Earth
    PHOTO: Dag Asle Mykløen
  • Theatre of violence© Kacper Czubak --
    Theatre of violence
    PHOTO: Kacper Czubak
  • Praying for Armageddon © UpNorth Film
    Praying for Armageddon
    PHOTO: UpNorth Film
  • The Last of the Seagulls  © Making Movies (FI)
    The Last of the Seagulls
    PHOTO: Making Movies (FI)
  • The Gullspång Miracle© Pia Lehto
    The Gullspång Miracle
    PHOTO: Pia Lehto

The above range of cinematic sensibilities and subject matter spanning the globally urgent and the relatable personal, carries over to the Fund-supported projects in 2023. The range of voices as well, including Norwegian-Sámi filmmaker Ellen-Astri Lundby’s Lapp versus Sámi (Lapp versus same), about ongoing court cases concerning the distribution of Sámi land, and newcomer Swedish filmmaker Loran Batti’s G – 21 Scenes from Gottsunda (G – 21 scener från Gottsunda), about his hometown, the vulnerable area of Gottsunda, and the dilemma of staying or leaving.

Other pressing issues of the day are reflected in films such as the Norwegian Tax Wars by Hege Dehli, about the global effort to hold multinationals accountable; the Danish I Belong to Nowhere (Jeg tilhører ingen steder) by Kaspar Astrup Schröder, about the loneliness epidemic; and the Swedish Hacking Hate by Simon Klose, about far-right extremism online. In addition, films dealing with environmental issues include the Finnish Once Upon a Time in a Forest (Havumetsän lapset) by Virpi Suutari, about young climate activists; and Norwegian Woolly (SAU) by Rebekka Nystabakk, about her sister transforming the family sheep farm, with love of animals and environmental sustainability at heart.

In 2023, the Fund received a considerable number of applications for support of documentary series, of which five were granted support, among others the Swedish 1 Holy Land (Israel Palestine i svensk TV 1959-1993) by Göran Hugo Olsson, dealing with the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict; and the Danish Fighting Demons with Dragons (Med drager mod dæmoner) by Camilla Magid, about the liberating power of role-playing for vulnerable teenagers – the latter meeting the Fund’s special objective of giving priority to films and series for children and youth. Naturally, the increase in series applications affects the average budget of the applications, and thus puts additional pressure on the Fund's support budget for documentaries.

All in all, the Nordic documentaries supported in 2023 are promising for films that will remind us of the past, prepare us for the future, entertain us with stories stranger than fiction, but also prompt us to take a good hard look at the complex times we are in the midst of. All both consolidating and challenging the strong legacy of the Nordic creative documentary. Stay tuned!

There is a special focus on productions targeting children and youth (C&Y) audiences in all support categories. In 2023, 17 C&Y productions were granted support. Out of the 16 supported fiction productions, 11 were feature films, and 5 were drama series. Altogether 6 supported fiction projects were animations. Only one documentary film applied and was supported.

Preschool animations were supported in a variety of genres. Among projects based on well-known IPs, the Danish 3D film When Mumbo Jumbo Grew Giant (Da Mumbo Jumbo blev kæmpestor) by Karsten Kiilerich is based on Jakob Martin Strid’s popular books. Camilla Läckberg, who is internationally known as a crime writer, has also excelled in children’s books. The Swedish 3D film Super-Charlie Begins by Jon Holmberg and Karsten Kiilerich is based on her books for kids.

The Norwegian Kaja the Great (Kaja den store) by Martin Lund offers an original story that explores new ways of dealing with cancer in a 3D adventure. The main character Kaja is a cancer cell, who is not capable of dividing herself. Only after her action-packed journey in the body of a 10-year-old sick boy, she learns that this might be a good thing.

On the series side we find stories that introduce national mythologies in new forms for preteens and families. The Icelandic 26x22 series Ormhildur the Brave (Ormhildarsaga) by Thorey Mjallhvit H. Ómarsdóttir features a girl in a post-apocalyptic world ridden with mythical creatures, who is on an adventure to solve the worsening climate crisis. A more everyday story but still featuring imaginative characters in all shapes is the Danish series The Hedge of The World (Hullet i Hækken) by Esben Toft Jacobsen. The 26x9 series’ target group is 6-9-year-olds. It promotes sticking together, helping each other, and daring to be who you are, no matter what others might think.

In 2023 there was a welcome rise of applications with Sámi stories told by Sámi creators, also for younger audiences. Many take place in Norwegian Sámi areas. Both the Sámi/Norwegian film Biru Unjárga by Egil Pedersen, and the Sámi/Norwegian 6-episode drama series Shut Up! (Oro Jaska), written by Vegard Bjørsmo, Silje Burgin-Borch and Kathrine Nedrejord, and directed by Johanna Pyykkö, target youth audiences.

The sole C&Y documentary in the 2023 applications was a Danish title. The film Fighting Demons with Dragons (Med drager mod dæmoner) by Camilla Magid captures coming-of-age stories at a special boarding school.

  • Fighting Demons with Dragons ©  Ida Guldbaek Arentsen
    Fighting Demons with Dragons
    PHOTO: Ida Guldbaek Arentsen

Among films supported in earlier years and successfully received in 2023 was the Norwegian film Listen Up! (Hør her’a!) by Kaveh Tehrani. With warmth and humour it tackles cultural and gender identity themes from the angle of two teenagers in a Pakistani-Norwegian family. The film won the Children’s and Youth Film Prize at the Nordic Film Days Lübeck.

In the Swedish writer-director Mika Gustafson’s feature Paradise is burning (Paradiset brinner), three teenage sisters struggle to keep living by themselves and not being caught by social services after their mother has left their home. The film won prizes in Lisbon & Estoril, London, Venice, and at home in Sweden.

  • Listen Up! © Arthaus
    Listen Up!
    PHOTO: Arthaus
  • Paradise is Burning © HOBAB
    Paradise is Burning

13 C&Y film distribution applications resulted in nine Nordic unique titles receiving the Fund’s distribution support in 2023. The Fund also offers dubbing support for children’s films. Out of the seven supported titles this year, five were animations.

In 2023 the Fund provided a record amount of distribution support to Nordic films for cinema distribution in the Nordic region outside the film’s domestic country. Out of a total of 55 supported films, 49 were single films, and 6 received slate support. All Nordic films may apply for support, regardless of if they have previously received top-financing support from the Fund or not.

Films from all five Nordic countries applied for and received support. Icelandic distributors are especially active in applying for slate support. An example of a slate to Iceland was the two Finnish films The Grump: In Search of an Escort (Mielensäpahoittaja Eskorttia etsimässä), directed by Mika Kaurismäki, and Girl Picture (Tytöt tytöt tytöt) by Alli Haapasalo, and the Swedish co-production Boy from Heaven (Walad min al-Janna) by Tarik Saleh.

In 2023, a number of films received distribution support for 3-4 countries. These were the Finnish films Sisu by Jalmari Helander and Fallen Leaves (Kuolleet lehdet) by Aki Kaurismäki, the Swedish films Second Act (Andra akten) by Mårten Klingberg and Stockholm Bloodbath by Mikael Håfström, the Icelandic film Operation Napoleon (Napóleonsskjölin) by Óskar Thór Axelsson, and the Sámi/Norwegian film Let the River Flow (Ellos eatnu – La elva leve) by Ole Giæver.

  • The Grump © Bioparadis
    The Grump
    PHOTO: Bioparadis
  • Girl Picture © Nordisk Film
    Girl Picture
    PHOTO: Nordisk Film
  • Boy From Heaven© Courtesy TriArt
    Boy From Heaven
    PHOTO: Courtesy TriArt
  • Sisu© Nordisk Film
    PHOTO: Nordisk Film
  • Fallen Leaves © Arthaus
    Fallen Leaves
    PHOTO: Arthaus
  • Second Act© Nordisk Film
    Second Act
    PHOTO: Nordisk Film
  • Stockholm Bloodbath © Viaplay, Scanbox
    Stockholm Bloodbath
    PHOTO: Viaplay, Scanbox
  • Operation Napoleon© Arni, Sagafilm
    Operation Napoleon
    PHOTO: Arni, Sagafilm
  • Let The River Flow © Mer Film
    Let The River Flow
    PHOTO: Mer Film

Six Nordic documentaries received distribution support in 2023. Four of these were Swedish documentaries: And the King Said, What a Fantastic Machine by Axel Danielson and Maximilien Van Aertryck, Every Face has a Name by Magnus Gertten, After Work by Erik Gandini, and The Gullspång Miracle (Miraklet i Gullspång) by Maria Fredriksson. The other documentaries receiving distribution support were the Norwegian film Songs of Earth (Fedrelandet) by Margreth Olin, and the Danish film Apolonia, Apolonia by Lea Glob.

  • And the King Said, What a Fantastic Machine  © Plattform Produktion, Louis Daguerre
    And the King Said, What a Fantastic Machine
    PHOTO: Plattform Produktion, Louis Daguerre
  • Every Face Has A Name© Auto Images
    Every Face Has A Name
    PHOTO: Auto Images
  • After Work © Fasad AB (SE)
    After Work
    PHOTO: Fasad AB (SE)
  • The Gullspång Miracle ©  Pia Lehto
    The Gullspång Miracle
    PHOTO: Pia Lehto
  • Songs of Earth © Lars Erlend Tubaas Oymo
    Songs of Earth
    PHOTO: Lars Erlend Tubaas Oymo
  • Apolonia Apolonia© Danish Documentary
    Apolonia Apolonia
    PHOTO: Danish Documentary

All the children’s films that applied for dubbing support, received support in 2023. These were:

  • Danish All I Want for Christmas: The Magic Time Machine (Julemandens datter 3: Den magiske tidsmaskine) by Christian Dyekjær
  • Norwegian Titina by Kajsa Næss
  • Norwegian Teddy’s Christmas (Teddybjørnens jul) by Andrea Eckerbom
  • Norwegian Just Super (Helt super) and Three Robbers and a Lion (Folk og røvere i Kardemomme by) by Rasmus A. Sivertsen
  • Swedish Nelly Rapp - The Dark Forest (Nelly Rapp - Dödens spegel) by Johan Rosell
  • Swedish Who Are You, Mama Moo? (Vem är du, Mamma Mu?) by Christian Ryltenius
  • All I Want for Christmas © Martin Dam Kristensen, Ymer
    All I Want for Christmas
    PHOTO: Martin Dam Kristensen, Ymer
  • Titina© Mikrofilm
    PHOTO: Mikrofilm
  • Teddy's Christmas© Fantefilm
    Teddy's Christmas
    PHOTO: Fantefilm
  • Just Super © Qvisten Animation
    Just Super
    PHOTO: Qvisten Animation
  • Three Robbers And A Lion, Stills © Qvisten Animation AS
    Three Robbers And A Lion, Stills
    PHOTO: Qvisten Animation AS
  • Nelly Rapp - The Dark Forest © Malin Gutke
    Nelly Rapp The Dark Forest
    PHOTO: Malin Gutke
  • Who Are You, Mamma Moo © SF Studios
    Who Are You, Mamma Moo
    PHOTO: SF Studios

Three Robbers and a Lion is now dubbed from Norwegian to five other Nordic languages, including Sámi, in 2022-2023, with support from the Fund. Most of the films supported for dubbing, including this, were also granted distribution support.

The Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize was introduced by the Fund in 2016, and is awarded annually to the best Nordic drama series script.

Following a thorough evaluation of about ten series, five series ended up being nominated – one from each country. Among the five nominated series, the jury selected one winner, which receives both honour and NOK 200,000. This year’s jury was comprised of actor Amanda Collin, producers Nebojša Taraba and Wanda Bendjelloul, and Leif Holst Jensen, Dean of the Faculty of Audiovisual Media and Creative Technologies at the Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences. The winner was presented at TV Drama Vision, Gothenburg Film Festival, in January 2023.

  • Carmen Curlers© DR
    Carmen Curlers
  • The Invincibles © Heikki Leis
    The Invincibles
    PHOTO: Heikki Leis
  • As Long As We live © Lilja Jons
    As Long As We live
    PHOTO: Lilja Jons
  • Kids in Crime © Einar Film Drama
    Kids in Crime
    PHOTO: Einar Film Drama
  • Blackwater© Apple Tree Productions
    PHOTO: Apple Tree Productions

The nominated series were:


Carmen Curlers
Nominated writer: Mette Heeno.
To read interview: CLICK HERE.

The Invincibles (Rosvopankki)
Nominated writer: Matti Kinnunen.
To read interview: CLICK HERE.

As Long as We Live (Svo lengi sem við lifum)
Nominated writer: Aníta Briem.
To read interview: CLICK HERE.

Kids in Crime
Nominated writer: Kenneth Karlstad.
To read interview: CLICK HERE.

Blackwater (Händelser vid vatten)
Nominated writers: Maren Louise Käehne and Karin Arrhenius.
To read interview: CLICK HERE.

  • Kids In Crime© Einar Film
    Kids In Crime
    PHOTO: Einar Film

The winner of Nordisk FIlm & TV Fond Prize 2023 was Kids in Crime.
To read more: CLICK HERE.

In December 2023, the nominees for next year’s Prize were announced: CLICK HERE.
In accordance with the Fund's tradition, the winner will be presented at the Gothenburg Film Festival early next year.

The Fund operates as the secretary to the Nordic Council Film Prize. The Film Prize was introduced in 2002, and permanently established in 2005 as one of the council’s culture prizes. The other culture prizes are the Nordic Council Children and Young People’s Literature Prize, the Nordic Council Literature Prize, the Nordic Council Music Prize, and the Nordic Council Environment Prize.

Each year, the Film Prize is awarded to an artistically significant, Nordic full-length feature film or documentary. This year to a film premiering in theatres between the 1st of July 2022 and 30th of June 2023. The DKK 300,000 prize is always shared equally among the screenwriter, director, and producer, underscoring how film as an art form is brought about by the close collaboration of these three main contributors.

In 2023, for the first time ever, six films competed for the Nordic Council Film Prize, as a film from Greenland was nominated, in addition to the films from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden selected by national juries. The nominees were announced during the Haugesund International Film Festival in August.

The Nordic Council Film Prize winner was announced later in the year, on the 31st of October, in Oslo Opera House. The Nordic jury consisted of the chairs of each of the national juries: Professor Heidi Hilarius-Kalkau Philipsen, Executive Director of Finlandssvenskt filmcentrum Mikaela Westerlund, Chairperson of Film GL Klaus Georg Hansen, Managing Director at Iceland Academy of the Arts Jóna Finnsdóttir, and the journalists Inger Merete Hobbelstad and Emma Gray Munthe.

  • Empire © Meta Film, Linda Wassberg
    PHOTO: Meta Film, Linda Wassberg
  • Bubble  ⓒ Anni Hartikainen, Rabbit Films
  • The Edge of the Shadows © Imalik Film, Freyr Saevarsson
    The Edge of the Shadows
    PHOTO: Imalik Film, Freyr Saevarsson
  • Driving Mum © Ursus Parvus
    Driving Mum
    PHOTO: Ursus Parvus
  • War Sailor© Mer Film
    War Sailor
    PHOTO: Mer Film
  • Opponent© Indie Sales
    PHOTO: Indie Sales

The nominees of 2023 were:

Empire (Viften)
Directed by Frederikke Aspöck, written by Anna Neye and produced by Pernille Munk Skydsgaard, Nina Leidersdorff and Meta Louise Foldager Sørensen for Meta Film.

Bubble (Kupla)
Directed by Aleksi Salmenperä, written by Reeta Ruotsalainen and Aleksi Salmenperä, produced by Minna Haapkylä for Rabbit Films.

The Edge of the Shadows (Alanngut Killinganni)
Directed and written by Malik Kleist, produced by Nina Paninnguaq Skydsbjerg for PaniNoir / Imalik Film.

Driving Mum (Á Ferð með Mömmu)
Directed and written by Hilmar Oddsson, produced by Hlín Jóhannesdóttir for Ursus Parvus.

War Sailor (Krigsseileren)
Directed and written by Gunnar Vikene, produced by Maria Ekerhovd for Mer Film.

Opponent (Motståndaren)
Directed and written by Milad Alami, produced by Annika Rogell for Tangy.

  • Empire © Meta Film, Linda Wassberg
    PHOTO: Meta Film, Linda Wassberg

The winner of Nordic Council Film Prize 2023 was Empire.
To read more: CLICK HERE.

Nordic Script
Nordic Script was introduced by the Fund in 2022 as a nine-month educational event for film and series professionals in the Nordic region. The initiative offers a unique opportunity for Nordic scriptwriters, producers and story editors to hone their script skills under mentorship guidance, to network with fellow Nordic colleagues, and to get access to industry events and inspiring masterclasses.

The initiative consists of three labs in three Nordic cities: One in Oslo in collaboration with NRK and Oslo Series Days, one in Gothenburg in collaboration with TV Drama Vision/Gothenburg Film Festival, and one in Helsinki in collaboration with City of Helsinki.

In its inaugural round, Nordic Script focused on drama series. After the 3rd lab in June, the participants were invited to the event Helsinki Script, where more than 25 top international TV writers, actors, producers, and financiers discussed creative processes from various angles in a room with 400 professional delegates.

When Nordic Script participants, scriptwriters Ilja Rautsi, Mahmona Khan and Johanna Ställberg, joined a session dedicated to Nordic script collaboration together with Danish lab mentor Adam August, it became very clear that the initiative had benefitted them all. Their participant experience was described as “excellent”.

  • Helsinki Script, Nordic Script, Next of Kin © Anna Hylander
    Helsinki Script, Nordic Script, Next of Kin
    PHOTO: Anna Hylander

To read more on Helsinki Script: CLICK HERE.
Info on 2022/2023 mentors, participants and projects: CLICK HERE.

The second edition of Nordic Script that started in September in Oslo, is built around the development of feature films and close-ended mini-series.

Once again nine projects were selected from five Nordic countries by a pan-Nordic jury, out of the more than 60 projects applying, some with multiple writers aboard. In the new round, eleven scriptwriters and three producers/story editors from all the Nordic countries work with three Scandinavian mentors.

Info on 2023/2024 mentors, participants and projects: CLICK HERE.

  • Nordic Script© NFTVF
    Nordic Script

Nordic Talents
Since the year 2000, Nordic Talents has been a meeting place for young Nordic talents in the audiovisual industry. Each year, Nordic film graduates get a chance to pitch their first professional projects to the Nordic industry and to compete for the main award of NOK 250,000 and the Special Mention of NOK 50,000.

The competition is open to students who are graduating with a bachelor’s or master’s degree. The event is an important networking arena for the newly graduate, as well as for the active producers and financiers from the Nordic region. In 2023 the Fund welcomed 200 professionals to the two day-event.

Nordic Talents 2023 took place September 6th-7th in Copenhagen, at the National Film School of Denmark. Out of almost 70 applications, 15 projects were chosen to compete. Before taking part in the pitch competition, the pitching talents were offered a two day pitch education.

Info on Nordic Talents 2023 competitors: CLICK HERE.

The 2023 year’s jury consisted of producers Maria Ekerhovd and Anton Máni Svansson, writer/director/producer Lone Scherfig, Head of Production at the Finnish Film Foundation Matti Paunio, and CEO of the London Film School Neil Peplow.

The winners of Nordic Talents 2023 were Cute and Medicated.
To read more: CLICK HERE.

  • Pitch Prize: Marlene Emilie Lyngstad, Carl Olsbæk Adelkilde (CUTE) © Torleif Hauge
    Pitch Prize: Marlene Emilie Lyngstad, Carl Olsbæk Adelkilde (CUTE)
    PHOTO: Torleif Hauge
  • Special Mention: Las Dyhrcrone (Medicated) © Torleif Hauge
    Special Mention: Las Dyhrcrone (Medicated)
    PHOTO: Torleif Hauge

Total funding
Total amount of funding in 2023 was NOK 127,624,736.

Total number of applications received and total number of projects funded
Applications Funded
Production funding 102 74
Distribution 55 55
Industry Initiatives 26 23
Dubbing 9 9
Production funding
Feature Film 45 33
Drama Series 32 24
Documentary 25 17
Total 102 74
Funding ratio of support categories
Fiction: 80.5 %
Documentary: 9.1 %
Distribution & Dubbing: 7.1 %
Industry Initiatives: 3.3 %
Production funding per country
Sweden: 33.3 %
Norway: 23.7 %
Denmark: 23.6 %
Finland: 11.9 %
Iceland: 7.5 %
Feature film
Denmark 10
Sweden 9
Finland 6
Norway 6
Iceland 2
Total 33
Children & Youth 11
Animation 2
Drama series
Sweden 9
Norway 6
Denmark 3
Finland 3
Iceland 3
Total 33
Children & Youth 5
Animation 2
Norway 6
Sweden 6
Denmark 3
Finland 2
Iceland 0
Total 17
Children & Youth 1
Animation 0
The 55 applications that recieved distribution support were for 47 unique film titles.
Single film 49
Slate distribution (2-3 films) 6
Total 55
Distribution to
Denmark 17
Norway 16
Sweden 9
Finland 8
Iceland 5
Total 55
Children & Youth 13
Documentary 6
The 9 applications that recieved dubbing support were for 7 unique children films (4 Norwegian, 2 Swedish and 1 Danish). Some films were dubbed into several languages.
Dubbing into
Finnish 5
Icelandic 3
Danish 2
Norwegian 2
Swedish 1
Industry initiatives
Norway 7
Denmark 6
Sweden 3
Finland 2
Iceland 2
Pan-Nordic 2
European 1
Total 23

Gender statistics

  • Gender stats Total applic 23
  • Gender stats Total approved 23
  • Gender stats appr fiction 23
  • Gender stats appr docs 23
  • All productions with mixed directors were granted support © NFTVF
    All productions with mixed directors were granted support

*Mixed: cases where the role was shared by persons of different genders
**Writer: only a role in feature film/drama series

Note: No other genders than female/male applied for support in 2023. If two or more of the same gender shared the role, they are counted as one.

Local Film Market Share
Norway: 27 %
Denmark: 25 %
Finland: 23 %
Sweden: 17 %
Iceland: 17 %

Cinema admissions
Cinema admissions before, during and after the pandemic.
The data is rounded.

2019: 13.2 million
2020: 7.2 million
2021: 6.8 million
2022: 10.2 million
2023: 10 million
2019: 8.4 million
2020: 3.9 million
2021: 3.4 million
2022: 5.8 million
2023: 7.2 million
2019: 1.3 million
2020: 0.5 million
2021: 0.8 million
2022: 0.9 million
2023: 1 million
2019: 11.3 million
2020: 4.9 million
2021: 5.7 million
2022: 8.8 million
2023: 9.4 million
2019: 15.9 million
2020: 5.7 million
2021: 6 million
2022: 10.4 million
2023: 11.2 million

The Board of Directors
The Board consists of five members, one from each Nordic country, with insight into the Fund's areas of work. At least two board members must have competence in the field of film, and at least two in the field of television. The Board of Directors is appointed by the Nordic Council of Ministers.

Board of Directors
Nikolaj Vitting (Chairperson)
Elina Pohjola
Sigurrós Hilmarsdóttir
Hans Andreas Fay
Magdalena Jangard
Deputy Board Members
Jacob Neiiendam
Lasse Saarinen
Skarphéðin Gudmundsson
Elisabeth Mjøs
Anna Croneman

The Parties
The parties of Nordisk Film & TV Fond per 31.12.2023 are the Nordic Council of Ministers, Danish Film Institute, DR, TV 2 Denmark, Finnish Film Foundation, Yle, MTV Oy, Icelandic Film Centre, RÚV, Sýn hf, Síminn, Norwegian Film Institute, NRK, TV 2 Norway, Discovery Networks Norway, VGTV, Swedish Film Institute, SVT, TV4, Discovery Networks Sweden, C More and Viaplay Group.

The Fund's participation at festivals, seminars and industry meetings:
February TV Drama Vision & Nordic Film Market (Gothenburg Film Festival), European Film Market (Berlinale)
May The Cannes Film Festival, Doc Forward (Nordisk Panorama)
June Helsinki Script, Midnight Sun Film Festival
August New Nordic Films (The Norwegian International Film Festival)
September Nordic Talents (Nordisk Film & TV Fond), Oslo Series Days, Finnish Film Affair (Helsinki International Film Festival), Nordisk Panorama Forum
October Mirage Film Festival
November International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam
  • In 2023 the Fund had 6 employees, corresponding to 5.5 man-labour years.
  • The Fund paid pension contributions for its employees.
  • The administration's absence due to illness was equal to 4%.
  • The working conditions are highly satisfactory, in terms of space, equipment and environment.
  • CEO compensation: NOK 1,595,000 including salary, pension contributions, holiday allowance and other remuneration.
  • Board members fee: NOK 22,500 for the Board Members, and NOK 30,000 for the Chairperson.
  • The Board of Directors held three board meetings: April 21st, June 13th, and November 7th.
  • The accounts for 2023 were audited by the Office of the Auditor General of Norway.
  • The accounting firm Aider was retained for assistance on salary payment and accounts.
  • The Fund's operations do not pollute the external environment.
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