Dates in Real Life from Norwegian creator Jakob Rørvik was awarded Best Series in the International Panorama section at Europe’s biggest TV series festival.

Six Nordic series were selected for the competition sections at Series Mania in Lille on March 15-22. Three series, all supported by Nordisk Film & TV Fond, competed in the International Panorama program, with Norwegian series Dates in Real Life winning the award for Best Series. In the Short Forms Competition, Finnish series Limbo Zone (Epätila) received a Special Mention.

Dates in Real Life is created, written and directed by Jakob Rørvik, and produced by Maipo Film’s Synnøve Hørsdal and Petter Onstad Løkke for NRK. The 7X25 min series tells the story of Ida (Gina Bernhoft Gørvell), a woman in her mid-twenties who spends most of her life online. When she is dumped by Marvin (Jacques Colimon), the boyfriend she’s never met in person for a woman he is dating “IRL”, Ida also has to start looking for a physical partner – while not giving up hope on getting back with Marvin.

The series world premiered at Series Mania, and will be screened domestically through the national broadcaster in the autumn. Dynamic Television handles international sales.

“This recognition at Series Mania is absolutely invaluable to us, both for the series' first meeting with an audience and its future life internationally. Series Mania is one of the most important arenas for TV drama, and we couldn't ask for a better start,” says producer Hørsdal from Maipo Film.

Dates in Real Life is the first TV series by writer/director Rørvik, whose feature film debut Thomas vs. Thomas (A Sensational Theory Regarding an Insignificant Life in the Multiverse) (Thomas mot Thomas (en sensasjonell teori om det ubetydelige livet i multiverset)) premiered in 2022.

The Norwegian/Canadian/Greek co-production So Long Marianne, also for the Norwegian public broadcaster NRK, was selected for Series Mania’s International Competition. The series tells the love story between Canadian singer-poet Leonard Cohen and Norwegian Marianne Ihlen on the Greek island of Hydra in the late sixties, and is written by Øystein Karlsen and Jo Nesbø.

In addition to Dates in Real Life, the International Panorama competition featured the Swedish series 8 Months (Doktrinen), a political thriller unveiling the inner workings of political communication and diplomacy, directed by Jens Jonsson and Johan Lundin, and the Swedish/Danish production All and Eva (Allt och Eva), about a woman who decides to have a child through a sperm donor with a completely different agenda than hers, created and directed by Johanna Runevad.

Presented in the Short Forms Competition, where it received the jury’s Special Mention, the Finnish 6 X 4 min series Limbo Zone (Epätila) is an urban tale of a young homeless woman's struggle, directed by Kiia Kuivalainen and produced by Wildhog Productions.

The Shorts Forms Competition also featured Danish series The Struggle for Existence (Kampen for tilværelsen), a comedic portrayal of modern masculinity through two thirty-something friends, from creators Jannik Dahl Pedersen and Rasmus Skaarup Johansen.