The series Descendants backed by Benelux's Lumiere Group and the film Solitude by Ninna Pálmadóttir will be pitched at the rebooted Icelandic event.
Under a new management team since January, led by managing director Carolina Salas, together with artistic director and Lamb producer Hrönn Kristinsdóttir, the Stockfish Film & Business Festival (March 23-April 2) has announced the line-up of its centrepiece industry event: the works in progress, as well as highlights of its programme.
The works in progress to be pitched March 29 both onsite and online, takes in four feature films, four documentaries and two series, looking for co-financing, distribution or further promotion.
“We’re proud to underline that the projects are majority directed and produced by women. This is an excellent sign of our industry’s efforts to reach gender parity,” said Salas.
All projects backed by the Icelandic Film Centre, co-organiser of the works in progress session, will be introduced by their respective directors and/or producers, with various clips.
As Long as We Live, for instance, the drama created and written by Anita Briem for Glassriver and Channel 2 Iceland, was nominated earlier this year for the Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize-Outstanding Screenplay of a Nordic series.
The second drama series to be pitched - Descendants from first-time showrunner Tinna Hrafnsdóttir (Quake), is a story of inheritance and sibling rivalry. Polarama is producing for the platform Síminn, in co-production with Freyja Filmworks, Projects, Belgium’s Lunanime, co-financing from Benelux’s Lumiere Group.
Among the feature projects are Loss by Ari Alexander Ergis Magnússon (Mihkel) produced by Iceland’s mogul Fridrik Thór Fridriksson, and two anticipated directorial debuts: Natatorium by Helena Stéfansdóttir which won Best Nordic Project at the last Finnish Film Affair in Helsinki, and Solitude by the multi-awarded Ninna Pálmadóttir (Paperboy, All Dogs Die), based on a script by Rúnar Rúnarsson.
Documentaries by award-winning filmmakers to be pitched include The Ground Beneath Our Feet by Yrsa Roca Fannberg (The Last Autumn) also selected for next week’s CPH:DOX Forum, and the short film Flowers to the Bone by Kristín Björk Kristjánsdóttir (Grandma-Lo-fi).
Salas said a strong delegation of 50 international film professionals are expected at the non-profit Stockfish film event, supported by the City of Reykjavik, the Icelandic Film Centre, Film in Iceland and Nordisk Film & TV Fond.
The curated festival and industry event run by the leading Icelandic film associations, serves as a bridge between the local and global film and TV industry, and launching pad for new Icelandic talent.
Novelties this year include a Stockfish Honorary Award highlighting an outstanding contribution to the film industry, to be handed out to UK/Irish producer Mike Downey, chairman of the European Film Awards. Downey whose production credits takes in more than 100 films by directors such as Peter Greenaway, Agnieszka Holland, Julien Temple, Rajko Grlic, has worked closely for many years with Iceland’s celebrated director and producer Friðrik Þór Friðriksson.
“Stockfish is a fabulous festival, and Iceland is home to some of the best film makers in Europe, and I would like to give huge thanks to Hronn Kristinsdottir and the whole board for this award," Downey said. "There’s only one thing better than getting an award from the audience and that is an award from one’s peers. Having made a dozen films in Iceland or with Icelandic talent, I can really say that I am doubly honoured.”
In connection to the tribute to Downey, Stockfish will screen the films Oink, Mariupolis 2 and Small Body that received nominations and awards at the last European Film Awards held in Reykjavik, but haven’t yet premiered in Iceland. The EFA films will screen within Stockfish’s ‘Film Corners’ strand, next to the ‘Lux Corner’, hosting titles running for the LUX European Audience Film Award, and the ‘Sundance Corner’.
Other highlights include a Focus on Slovakia, a masterclass from Oscar-nominated cinematographer Florian Hoffmeister (Tár), currently working in Iceland on the filming of HBO’sTrue Detective, season 4, and a full overview of what Iceland has to offer to foreign co-production partners and filmmaking crews.
The event ‘Iceland on Film-How about Us?’ moderated by Wendy Mitchell, will be introduced March 31st, by Gisli Snær, recently appointed head of the Icelandic Film Centre (IFC).
Industry speakers from the IFC, Film in Iceland and Iceland Music will break down the latest Icelandic filming and recording incentives, expanding studio facilities, and co-production regulations through Nordisk Film & TV Fond and Eurimages.
“The Icelandic film industry is upping its game, while Icelandic films are garnering awards at top festivals around the world. Considering our small population and the cultural impact that we have internationally, we are extremely proud of our achievements, and looking forward to further expanding, through Stockfish, the networking opportunities for our talents and industry people,” said Salas.
Stockfish will announce next week the full list of its film programme and short film competition line up.
Full list of Works in Progress:
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ON STOCKFISH FILM & INDUSTRY FESTIVAL: CLICK HERE.