Children’s & Youth programme @ the Nordic Filmdays Lübeck

The 61st Nordic Filmdays Lübeck (29th October – 3rd November) were a complete success. In six days 196 films were screened (283 screenings) and over 36,000 people came to watch northern films and drama series.


It’s the only festival on the continent entirely devoted to the presentation of films from the North and Northeast of Europe. “We are very pleased to have matched the numbers of our anniversary last year,” said Florian Vollmers. “We sold 1,000 more tickets, which gave a small boost to revenues, while industry visitors took greater advantage of our extensive side-bar programme.”


As every year, the Nordic Filmdays Lübeck puts great value on projects and films for children and young people with artistic themes and approaches. The film ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS by Christian Dyekjær (Denmark, photo) was awarded the Children’s Jury Award of the Radisson Blu Senator Hotel Lübeck. The four jury members, aged 11-13, stated that the film’s subject was “very important and topical and that they liked the exciting and imaginative story”. The film tells about 12 year old Lucia, who dreams of taking over the job of Father Christmas one day. Unfortunately, that aspiration is reserved solely for male students. The jury’s honourable mention went to PHANTOM OWL FOREST by Anu Aun (Estonia).


The Children’s & Youth Film Award of the Gemeinnützige Sparkassenstiftung was given to STUPID YOUNG HEART, a drama by Selma Vilhunen (Finland, photo). The jury stated that the film “electrifies from the beginning till the end and stays with you afterwards. It tackles social and political issues that we consider highly topical worldwide without pointing any fingers“. Finland’s Oscar submission for 2020 tells the story of Kiira, 15 years old and pregnant. Lenni was just a boy she met at a party, but she wants to keep the baby. AWAY by Gints Zilbalodis (Latvia) received an honourable mention.


In addition to a thematically broad film programme, there was also a packed programme with workshops and concerts. This year, the Young Nordic Filmmakers including 20 young directors from Finland, Denmark, Norway and Germany have dedicated themselves to exciting topics about Europe in short documentaries. A group of young festival bloggers presented short video clips, blogs and guided interviews with festival guests and organisers. The rehearsal of the silent film project ‘Cine Concert’ was also part of their coverage. For the Cine Concert the festival cooperated with the Lübeck College of Music and Art and the Festival La Rochelle Cinéma in Lübeck’s French partner city. Young musicians from Germany and France jointly composed music to accompany three silent Norwegian films by Hans Berge, presented at both festivals, in Lübeck and La Rochelle.


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