Film i Väst - Your Scandinavian Partner in Co-Productions

Nine new Film i Väst co-productions presented on a star studded press conference in Cannes


Oscar nominee and Cannes winner Kirsten Dunst together with Daniel Brühl, double winner of Palme d’Or Ruben Östlund, Palme d’Or nominated Magnus von Horn and distinguished actress Trine Dyrholm, were among the guests when Film i Väst held it’s traditional press conference in Cannes in front of an upload of journalists. Nine new co-productions were introduced together with the five co-productions competing in Cannes.

Daniel Brühl, Ruben Östlund and Kirsten Dunst. Foto: Christina Kronér
Daniel Brühl, Ruben Östlund and Kirsten Dunst. Foto: Christina Kronér Photo: Christina Kronér

-2024 is an excellent festival year for Film i Väst with two co-productions in Official Competition plus three more in other festival sections. We are also very proud of the nine new co-productions we introduced today. Some of them are aiming for the big festivals, hopefully Cannes, and all of them will be filmed or postproduced in Region Västra Götaland in Sweden, says Kristina Börjeson, Head of Production at Film i Väst.

The nine new co-productions

Ruben Östlund: The Entertainment System is Down
Two-time Palme d’Or winner Ruben Östlund who just bought an Boeing 747 introduced his new feature film The Entertainment System is down accompanied by Kirsten Dunst, who acts together with Keanu Reaves and Daniel Brühl and the long-time fellow and producer Erik Hemmendorff, Plattform Produktion. The new film will be the sixth feature film co-produced by Film i Väst.

Set on a long-haul flight where the entertainment system fails, passengers are forced to face the horror of being bored. The first actors confirmed to board the plane, which will be built in full scale, are Kirsten Dunst, Daniel Brühl and Keanu Reeves. More names from the cast are to be revealed. Filming of the movie is scheduled to take place in early 2025.

The project will be Östlund’s second English-language film and seventh feature film after The Guitar Mongoloid (2004), Involuntary (2008), Play (2011), Force Majeure (2014), The Square (2017) and Triangle of Sadness (2022).

For The Entertainment System is Down Ruben Östlund was inspired by a social psychological study at Virginia University called The challenge of the disengaged mind. The experiment found that participants did not enjoy spending 6 to 15 minutes in a room by themselves with nothing to do but think. To take the experiment one step further, the researchers added a twist: With the touch of a button, the test subjects could, if desired, give themselves a harmless but very painful electric shock. It turned out that a quarter of all women and two-thirds of all men chose to press the button. One man even found being alone with his thoughts so unbearable that, during the 15 minutes, he gave himself 190 electric shocks.

The film will be a Swedish-German-French co-production, and will reunite the director with his longtime colleagues, producer Erik Hemmendorff (Plattform Produktion) and producer Philippe Bober (Coproduction Office). World sales are handled by Coproduction Office.

Tarik Saleh: Eagles of the Republic 
Tarik Saleh
has started filming his new feature, The Eagles of the Republic, his final film in the trilogy that started with Nile Hilton Incident and Cairo Conspiracy aka Boy from Heaven, winning the prize for Best Screenplay in Cannes 2022. All three films are co-produced with Film i Väst.

Starring, for the third time, Fares Fares and an international cast with French actress Lyna Khoudri, American-Palestinian Cherien Dabis, French-Morockan Zineb Triki, Finnish-Syrian Sherwan Haji and Jordanian Suhaib Nashwan.

Egypt's most adored actor, George Fahmy (Fares Fares) is pressured to star in a film commissioned by the highest authorities. He reluctantly accepts the role and finds himself thrown into the inner circle of power. Like a moth drawn to the flame he begins an affair with the mysterious wife of the general overseeing the film.

Eagles of the Republic is produced by Unlimited Stories, Apparaten and  Memento Production, in co-production with Film i Väst, Ström Pictures, Bufo, Films Boutique, SVT, ARTE France Cinéma, SF Studios, Mikael Ahlström Films, Playtime & Post Control. Supported by Swedish Film Institute, Playtime, Canal +, Ciné +, Eurimages, Nordisk Film & TV Fund, Memento Distribution, Bayerisher Rundfunk, ARTE France, Danish Film Institute, Centre National du cinéma et de l'image animée, Paris Region Fund, Finnish Film Foundation, Business Finland Oy, YLE and DR.

Nathalie Álvarez Mesén: The Wolf Will Tear Your Immaculate Hands
Present at the press conference to introduce Nathalie Álvarez Mesén’s new film The Wolf Will Tear Your Immaculate Hands was producer Nima Yosefi från HOBAB. It’s director Nathalie Alvarez Mesén’s first feature since Clara Sola and she has co-written it together with Sjón.

Set in the 1860s in the remote North Pacific West of the U.S., the story follows Isabel, a Native American woman who, educated at a Christian mission school, grapples with her loss of heritage. Now, she begins her position as a governess for the daughters of a British widower. As the arranged marriage of the eldest daughter looms closer, tensions rise within the household, uncovering a mystical bond between the women and the forest surrounding them—a connection the girls’ father is desperate to break.

Maryam Moghaddam:
Director Maryam Moghaddam is prohibited to leave Iran by the regime and together with her co-director and co-writer Behtash Sanaeeha she had to introduce her new project on a pre-recorded video. In place in Cannes was the producer  Peter Krupenin from HOBAB. In februari 2024 Maryam Moghaddam’s film My Favourite Cake was nominated a Golden Bear at the Berlinale were it won the FIPRESCI prize.

When Bouran, a lonely young woman in a rural Iranian village, tries to uncover the truth about her beloved sister Sana’s disappearance, she meets unexpected resistance from her parents, the police and the local community. This sets Bouran on a journey that will bring to light not only Sana’s forbidden same-sex relationship, but an even more sinister secret that exposes the true hypocrisy and misogyny of the moral, religious and sexual codes the village has always lived by.

Bouran is a dark, atmospheric depiction of the true cost of religious misogyny and sexual discrimination in the name of “honor”, in Iran and around the world.

Emilie Blichfeldt: 
The Ugly Stepsister
The Ugly Stepsister
is a daring and unexpected take on Cinderella’s world famous tale, seen through the eyes of the ugly stepsister, combining comedy and horror by Emilie Blichfeldt.

In a twisted take on the classic Cinderella story, ‘The Ugly Stepsister’ follows Elvira as she battles to compete with her insanely beautiful stepsister. In a fairy-tale kingdom where beauty is a brutal business, Elvira will go to any lengths to catch the prince’s eye. ‘The Ugly Stepsister’ is the gory tale of the blood and sweat, grit and gold that goes into making Elvira the belle of the ball.

In the lead, actress Lea Myren (Kids in Crime) makes a remarkable feature film debut as Elvira. Thea Sofie Loch Naess (The Last Kingdom) plays the Cinderella-part. The wicked stepmother is played by Ane Dahl Torp (The Wave, Occupied). The movie also stars a big Swedish cast: Otto is played by Ralph Carlsson (Hundraåringen som klev ut genom fönstret och försvann), Adam Lundgren (The Conference, Vår tid är nu) plays Dr. Estetique, Cecilia Forss (I rymden finns inga känslor, Masjävlar) is Sophie, Malte Gårdinger (Young Royals) plays the stable boy Isak, Isac Calmroth (Ondskan) is Prince Julian and Isac Aspberg and Albin Weidenbladh plays the Prince’s friends.

The film is produced by Mer Film/Maria Ekerhovd in Norway (The Innocents, War Sailor and Joachim Trier’s upcoming feature Sentimental Value). It is co-produced by Film i Väst, Lizette Jonjic for Zentropa Sweden, Mariusz Włodarski for Poland’s Lava Films and Theis Nørgaard for Denmark’s Motor.

Joachim Trier: Sentimental Value 
With The Worst Person in the World Joachim Trier was nominated for a Palme d’Or and double Oscar nominated for Best Screenplay and Best International Feature. Norwegian actress Renate Reinsve won Best Female Actress for her role in the film. ris som Bästa kvinnliga skådespelare för sin roll i filmen. A film co-produced by Film i Väst and partially filmed in Region Västra Götaland.

Joachim Trier’s sixth film Sentimental Value is an intimate, moving, and often funny exploration of family, memories, and the reconciliatory power of art. Here Joachim Trier reunites with Cannes-winning actress Renate Reinsve, along with his faithful team including co-screenwriter Eskil Vogt.

In pre production, delivery 2025. A Norwegian, German, Swedish, Danish and French production. Producers are Maria Ekerhovd at Mer Film, and Andrea Berentsen Ottmar at Eye Eye Pictures, Denmark/Sweden’s Zentropa (Lizette Jonjic), Juliette Schrameck at Agat Films, Nathanaël Karmitz and Elisha Karmitz for MK Production, and Germany’s Komplizen. The movie has received funding from Arte France Cinema.

Eirik Svenson: Safe House
Norwegian director Eirik Svensson presented his feature film Safe House scripted by Harald Rosenløw Eeg and Lars Gudmestad.

The civil war rages in the Central African Republic. Linn (35) leads a team of aid workers who are working tirelessly to save lives in a makeshift field hospital outside the massive refugee camp. Suddenly, a desperate man runs into the clinic. He is Muslim, and he is persecuted and in mortal danger. Everyone holds their breath. Outside, the mob and the Christian militia that want the Muslim man handed over and killed are growing. Linn is responsible for security. Now she must act quickly. Despite the risk she poses to herself and the rest of the team, Linn decides to follow her own conscience. While fighting the battle of her life, she must also consider the value of a single human life.

Safe House is based on the true story of the drama that unfolded during 15 intense hours at Doctors Without Borders' field hospital in Bangui on Christmas Eve, 2013

Cast: Kristine Kujath Thorp, Mattis Herman Nyquist, Bibi Tanga, Alexander Karim, Alma Pöysti, Martial Batchamen Tchana, Tracy Gotoas, Nixon Singa, Chris Djuma

Safe House is directed by Eirik Svensson and written by Harald Rosenløw Eeg & Lars Gudmestad.

The film is produced by Catrin Gundersen & Hugo Hagermann Føsker for Fantefilm Fiksjon, with support from the Norwegian Film Institute and Nordisk Film & TV Fond, in collaboration with Film i Väst, Cinenic Film (Annika Hellström), Nordisk Film and ReelMedia. Domestic distribution by Nordisk Film. International sales handled by TrustNordisk

Jens Lien: The Nation’s Gambit 
The Nation’s Gambit by Jens Lien is based on Johan Høst’s debut novel, En nasjon i sjakk, which is the first entry in a planned trilogy, and the story revolves around Delta Squad’s operational leader Anton Block and his right hand Björk Jónsdottir.

Norway's prime minister is kidnapped by a terrorist and disappears without a trace. The terrorist makes only one demand. That the politicians in power are playing a game of chess over the prime minister's life. The chess pieces represent people who work for the state or as leaders in society. If the politicians win the game, the prime minister will live, but every time the terrorist takes a piece, a human must pay with their life. The politicians and their appointed rescue team, the Delta Squad, are faced with an impossible dilemma: Can they afford to sacrifice other human lives in an attempt to save the prime minister? With only 24 hours to win the game and save the prime minister, they have no choice but to play, but with every move they make, death comes closer. And with no leads to go on, could sacrificing a first chess piece give them a clue to find the terrorist?

The Nation’s Gambit is produced by the Norwegian production company Stig og Stein Studio, with Stig Hjerkinn Haug, Fredrik Støbakk, and Tale Bryn Teigene serving as producers. Co-producers include SF Studios Yaba Holst and Joakim Hansson, along with Film i Väst, led by Kristina Börjeson, Head of Production. The film is financed with support from Film i Väst, Filminvest, and private investors.

Teona Mitevska: Mother 
After Jackie Kennedy, Frida Kahlo, Princess Diana and Marilyn Monroe, it is now time for another cultural icon of the last century to get its well-deserved and definitive cinematic treatment! Penned and directed by one of Eastern Europe’s most lauded auteur Teona Mitevska (God exits her name is Petrunya – Berlinale 2019; The Happiest Man In The World – Venice 2022), this prestige biopic will follow religious icon Mother Teresa as her faith gets tested during a lapse of a few days, the most challenging of her spiritual life. Acclaimed star Noomi Rapace will have her take on the body and spirit of the most beloved figure in Catholic church, in what’ll surely be a transformative, career-best performance. A thoughtful an introspective look on devotion and sisterhood and an intense, suspenseful story that will take worldwide audiences to meet the persona behind the icon, the woman behind the Mother. Expected World Release: Spring/Summer 2025.

Directed by Teona Mitevska and produced by Sébasten Delloye and Labina Mitevska, in co-production with Piodor Gustafsson, Rainy Days, and Film i Väst.

For more images and information, please contact Film i Väst:

Ulrika Grönérus
+46-708 64 37 36


Daniel Brühl, Ruben Östlund and Kirsten Dunst. Foto: Christina Kronér
Daniel Brühl, Ruben Östlund and Kirsten Dunst. Foto: Christina Kronér
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