Jens Jonsson’s arctic ping-pong
by Annika Pham
Multiple award-winning short filmmaker Jens Jonsson is currently in the northern city of Gällivare, above the Arctic Circle, filming his much awaited feature debut King of Ping-Pong, produced by Bob Film of Sweden.
Considered to be one of the rising stars of Swedish cinema, the 33 year-old filmmaker studied film directing at Dramatiska Institutet in Stockholm, where he made the short films Reparation (2001) and K-G for Better or for Worse (2002), both winners of the silver medal in the Cinéfondation competition at Cannes.
His subsequent work, Brother of Mine, won the Silver Bear at the 2002 Berlin Film Festival and a retrospective of his films was held at the 2006 Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival. His highly popular series Good Morning Children, also produced by Bob Film, was shown on Swedish public broadcaster SVT in 2005.
Like many of his shorts, King of Ping-Pong deals with human relations and family ties. Co-scripted by Jonsson with Hans Gunnarsson (Evil), the film tells the story of an overweight ping-pong champion who is forced to rely on his popular younger brother to defend himself from bullies until a surprising revelation threatens their family unity.
One of the 12 finalists for the 2007 Sundance/NHK International Filmmmakers Award, the €1.9m project was produced by Janne Blomgren for Bob Film in co-production with Denmark’s Nordisk Film. Other co-financiers include Filmpool Nord, SVT, the Swedish Film Institute, the Nordic Film & TV Fund and Eurimages.
The film will hopefully be ready for Cannes 2008 while its domestic release is set for September 2008.
Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.