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Per Damgaard Hansen • Producer

"I’ve become aware of the importance of challenging myself as a producer"


- Danish producer Per Damgaard Hansen, who co-founded Masterplan Pictures, is participating in EFP's 2018 Producers on the Move initiative - and we talked to him about it

Per Damgaard Hansen • Producer

National Film School of Denmark graduate Per Damgaard Hansen co-founded the production company Masterplan Pictures in Copenhagen in 2013. After a series of internationally acclaimed short films, Damgaard Hansen co-produced his first feature film, Winter Brothers [+see also:
film review
interview: Elliott Crosset Hove
interview: Hlynur Pálmason
film profile
, directed by Hlynur Pálmason, which premiered at the 2017 Locarno Festival. His multi-award-winning film on the festival circuit and in his home country - Best Film at the Bodils (see the news) and the Robert Awards (see the news) - also led him to participate in EFP's 2018 Producers on the Move initiative at the 71st Cannes Film Festival.

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Cineuropa: How was the experience of producing your first film, Winter Brothers; what have you gained from this?
Per Damgaard Hansen: Winter Brothers is produced together with Julie Waltersdorph and Hlynur Pálmason and it was the first feature film for all of us. The learning curve is really steep when you do things the first time, but that is also how you develop yourself as a filmmaker. Because of that I’ve become significantly more aware of the importance of challenging myself as a producer.

Denmark could be considered as an advanced country for production, are there any risks or challenges producing in your homeland?
Basically, I think we have a professional and healthy industry in Denmark. For a country our size we have a fairly high amount of productions, we have a high local market share and we have titles performing internationally. However, there is also a risk that a high degree of professionalization can cause an industry to creatively stagnate. With a focus on box office and profits in recent years art house and more experimenting films have had hard times. But I sense a small change these days not least with the audience who seems more curious to new ways of storytelling.

What do you expect of your participation in "Producers on the Move"?
I look much forward to share thoughts and insights with fellow producers and it’s also a great opportunity to present some of our upcoming projects.

As it is expected, you must have a plentiful of upcoming projects. What should we expect to watch first?
We are currently in post-production with The Blue Orchid, a debut feature by Carl Marott. We also worked with him on his graduation film The Oasis that was nominated for a student academy award and the same crew is now collaborating. Apart from our production company, cinematographer Anders Nydam, editor Frederik Strunk, sound designer Anne Gry Friis Kristensen, and composer Mads Forsby are also on board. In the lead is Joachim Fjelstrup who was a Berlinale’s Shooting Star in 2015 and now is starring in Danish series, Greyzone. The rest of the cast includes Julie Grundtvig Wester, Shelly Levy, Al Agami, Mattias Naan and Ken Vedsegaard.

What about the rest of your upcoming projects?
We are in production with a new (yet untitled) feature film by Simon Staho (Day and Night) co-written by the director and Christian Lollike. The crew is comprised of award-winning cinematographer Maria von Hausswolff, editor Julius Krebs Damsbo, and sound designer Anne Gry Friis Kristensen.

Finally, we have two projects in development stage. If The Light Takes Us by Danish/Icelandic director Anna Maria Helgadottir, written by acclaimed author Kim Leine and this is his first script. Also, I Travel with People, by debutant Morten Jørgensen who is better known for his short films and for the satirical TV series The Bank – A New Normal for the Danish National Television.

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