Welcome to our Icelandic Films
Not only Eyjafjallajökull
Iceland - that's the small island state in the middle of the Atlantic with its approx. 320,000 inhabitants, far away from Europe, the land of elves and geysers and home to the lava and ash spewing volcano by the unpronounceable name of Eyjafjallajökull.
Iceland is not only a popular location for film production because of its unique landscape (“Tomb Raider” and Clint Eastwood's “Flags of our Fathers” were shot here), but also a land of extremely creative filmmaking.
We are pleased that we can present cult films such as 101 REYKJAVIK by Baltasar Kormákur and a large part of the complete works of Fridrik Thor Fridriksson. Many of his films have been digitised thanks to the support of Eurimages.
The Academy Award nomination of CHILDREN OF NATURE introduced Icelandic film to the world map of the international film circuit. With the money, the self-taught film enthusiast Fridrik Thor Fridriksson founded the Icelandic Film Corporation, which not only produces Fridrik's films, but also numerous other Icelandic films. He left his mark on the Icelandic film scene, launched the first film magazine and the Reykjavik Film Festival. His internationally successful films are distinguished by wonderful imagery and his love for his characters, who are often found at the margins of society. And by the way is Fridrik Thor Fridriksson a wonderful storyteller even besides his films.
And since there are many more storytellers on Iceland, we have tried to bring them all together here. Stories from Iceland, Iceland under the Danish crown (THE HONOUR OF THE HOUSE), in the times of American occupation (MOVIEDAYS), Iceland in the 70s (THE QUIET STORM), stories about Icelandic women (THE SEAGULL’S LAUGHTER), about society's outsiders (ANGELS OF THE UNIVERSE), about people with special abilities (COLD LIGHT) and about a Japanese in Iceland (COLD FEVER). They are exciting and enthralling stories with a dry, often black humour, brilliant literary screen adaptations by Icelandic authors such as the Nobel literature laureate Halldor Laxness (THE HONOUR OF THE HOUSE), Einar Karason (DEVIL’S ISLAND) or Einar Már Gudmundsson (ANGELS OF THE UNIVERSE), but also by Tschechow (WHITE NIGHT WEDDING).
We thank the Icelandic Film Centre for enabling us to view the films, for providing contacts to the rightholders, for their patience and humour and, last but not least, for teaching us some Icelandic. Þetta reddast! Don't worry, it'll be all right!
We will continue to collect good stories. If you have a particular request, please just ask. Together with the Icelandic Film Centre we will be happy to help.
Statement of the IFC:
We contacted Europe's Finest with a possible collaboration in mind as the digitisation of Icelandic films helps to preserve the cultural heritage as well as giving the digitised titles a new lease of life. As there was no laboratory here in Iceland, until recently, that could store 35mm prints and negatives, the originals of most of the films are scattered all over Europe. Putting titles on digital format thus helps the filmmakers to access their material, restore it and safe-keep it here in Iceland. Of course the digitisation minimizes the possible damage to the films. Getting the titles digitised also allows greater flexibility and with restoration often even more quality. Obviously it is much cheaper to send DCP’s than 35mm prints. Furthermore, getting access to the EF network ensures that these titles get a new distribution platform and can more easily be seen by cinema lovers across Europe.
So the benefits for a possible collaboration were obvious.
Moreover, as support to expand the size of this project, the IFC agreed to pay for new subtitles of the films chosen by Europe´s Finest.
We´ll be happy to assist any time in the future to help Europe´s Finest to choose more Icelandic films for digitisation and distribution.