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HAUGESUND 2020

It’s business as (almost) usual as Haugesund sets off for its 2020 edition

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- The Haugesund Norwegian International Film Festival gets ready to begin, with the New Nordic Films film market in full gear, welcoming both physical and online participants

It’s business as (almost) usual as Haugesund sets off for its 2020 edition
Dag Johan Haugerud’s Beware of Children, a favourite at this year's Amanda award ceremony

Despite the extraordinary times and against some substantial odds, things are all set for lift-off for the Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund, which will take place August 14-21. Regular highlights include the annual Norwegian film award ceremony, the Amandas, as well as the New Nordic Films industry days, taking place August 18-21 and offering a full programme of screenings, forums and networking events. Additionally, for the fourth consecutive year, the festival will host the announcement of the nominees to the annual Nordic Council Film Prize. Other main programme items include the Eurimages Lab Project Award for best work in progress, the Nordic Co-Production pitch market, and a selection of fresh, edgy fare from the Nordic film schools, presented under the Next Nordic Generation moniker. Assorted panels and seminars, live as well as virtual, will take place along with book launch and art exhibition events and more.

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Given these particular times, appropriate measures have been taken and the festival will employ meticulous scanning procedures, readily accessible medical assistance and the usual, common-sense personal distance requirements. The physical market will be supplemented with an online one, covering assorted programme items such as market screenings, one-on-one meetings, work-in-progress presentations and pitches. Closely monitoring the updates of the Norwegian health authorities, festival director Tonje Hardersen reassuringly concludes that “We as a festival will do everything we can to make sure that this will be a safe and enjoyable experience for our participants, and we will see to it that every rule and health requirement is followed.” As she previously addressed, head of New Nordic Films Gyda Velvin Myklebust has left no stone unturned for forthcoming events and eventualities. “If push comes to shove, we will do a 180-degree turn”, she told Cineuropa in May, but would rather focus on optimism. Since then, the festival seems to have done very well in creating a rich and interesting programme, presenting 16 works in progress eligible for the Eurimages Lab Project award, another 16 projects in development in the Nordic Co-Production Market and ten graduations films from the Nordic film schools in Norway, Finland and Sweden. Hopefully, it should be business as usual.

Things will be off to a rather glorious start on Friday night, August 14, with the 36th edition of the Amanda ceremony, with a clear favourite: Dag Johan Haugerud’s Beware of Children [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Dag Johan Haugerud
film profile
]
, in with a chance to end the evening with no less than ten awards.

The Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund runs August 14-21. Access the full programme here.

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