Curtain falls on Triangel
by Annika Pham
31/05/2007 - Mattias Nohrborg, co-founder of specialist distribution house Triangelfilm, announced during the Cannes Film Festival that his company was filing for bankruptcy. “Everything has an end. The market for quality films has become more complicated, competition is stronger and in the end we couldn’t take it any longer,” he said.
Björn Ringdahl, who co-founded Triangel with Nohrborg in 1988, added: “We made some wrong strategic decisions a few years ago, and some of our biggest projects didn’t deliver as expected. For a small, independent company like Triangelfilm, without any backing from major players, it is just difficult to survive in the long run”.
In almost two decades, Triangelfilm has released some 500 international titles, playing a key role in broadening film culture and introducing European filmmakers to Sweden, such as Emir Kusturica, Michael Haneke, Mike Leigh, Ken Loach, François Ozon and Nanni Moretti.
In Sweden, Triangel has released around 50 films in 19 years, acting as producer or co-producer on some, such as Björn Runge’s Mouth to Mouth [trailer]. The company, which owned two cinemas – the Spegeln in Malmö since 1988 and the Sture in Stockholm since 1995 – decided to expand into exhibition, teaming up with two financial partners to buy Sandrew Metronome’s cinema chain in 2005 (renamed Astoria cinemas). However, the move turned sour only a year and a half later, as Astoria had to file for receivership.
“One of the problems was that we dealt with too many things at the same time,” said Ringdahl. “That was fine 10 years ago, but today you have to specialise more. We thought we could handle the whole business on our own, which was a misjudgement”.