NFI gives grants to Hamer, Sewitsky and French road movie
by Annika Pham
06/10/2009 - Established director Bent Hamer (O'Horten [trailer]), newcomer Anne Sewitsky and the French filmmaking duo Olivier Babinet and Fred Kihn have received a total of NOK 17m (€2m) in production support from the Norwegian Film Institute (NFI).
Hamer’s seventh feature film, Hjem til jul (“Home for Christmas”), is based on the novel Bare Mjuke Pakker Under Treet by Norwegian writer Levi Henriksen. The story focuses on different families as they prepare for a special evening on Christmas Eve. As in most Hamer movies, the tone will be both melancholic and humorous.
The NOK27m (€3.2m) project produced by Hamer’s BulBul Films is co-produced by the director’s long-time partner Pandora Film in Germany. The film received a NOK12m (€1.4m) grant from the NFI and €400,000 from Eurimages. Shooting will start on November 11, and Sandrew Metronome will handle domestic distribution in October 2010.
Partnerbytte will be the first feature film for Sewitsky, who directed several episodes of the popular NRK TV series Himmelblå (Blue Sky Blue). The black comedy about unfaithfulness is produced by Maipo as part as its Maipo Minimal strand that helps young filmmakers make their debut (such as Bard Breien’s The Art of Negative Thinking [trailer]). The NOK10m (€1.1m) Partnerbytte started filming on October 1.
Robert Mitchum is Dead by Babinet and Kihn is an existential road movie from Paris to the Polar circle starring Belgium actor Olivier Gourmet (news). The film is produced by France’s Ferris & Brockman, in co-production with Panache Production (Belgium), Agart (Poland) and Sweet Film (Norway). The NOK12.5m (€1.4m) film was awarded NOK 500,000 (€60,000) from the NFI. Delivery date is set for the autumn 2010.