STRONG YEAR FOR DOCS AND SHORTS IN THE NORTH
- The submissions prove that it's been a strong year for documentary film. That's why we've gone big and made room for four documentary programs this year, says John-Kristian Dalseth, the program director for Films from the North.
This year's program will feature 17 documentaries, which is more than the last two year's combined.
130 submitted films
Films from the North is TIFF's largest sidebar program, featuring short and documentary films from all over the Barents region. The program is a popular part of the festival and its screenings are often the first ones to sell out. A total of 130 films were submitted for consideration, and 39 of these made the cut for this year's program. Out of these, 23 will participate in competition for the coveted Tromsø Palm award.
This year's program comittee has in addition to program director Dalseth featured Rachel Andersen and Marja Bål Nango.
- There was a lot of exciting stuff among the submitted films, with a great variety both in genre and origin - which is great. As always there is a large spectre in the styles of storytelling and types of films featured, which makes the program pretty unpredictable and full of surprises, says Dalseth.
Swedish director Gunilla Bresky has been featured at the festival several times previously, most recently with her film I STOP TIME in 2014. The film chosen to open this year's Films from the North is her new documentary SON OF THE SUN, about the sami poet and musician Nils-Aslak Valkeapää. The film will have its world premiere at TIFF on January 17.
- Bresky's documentary on Valkeapää is both warm and moving, and also quite powerful. It works both as a tribute to the man, but also as a great document of an important time in both Norwegian and Sami history. With the Sami 100 year celebration taking place in 2017 it makes for a very fitting opening film, says John-Kristian Dalseth.
Veterans and new faces
The short films naturally also have their place in Films from the North, and this year there will be two strictly short film programs.
- We've got a very nice mix of up and coming young filmmakers and more established directors. Most of the films will have their world premiere at our festival, like EVERYTHING BURNS the new film from director Marianne Ulrichsen, who won both the Tromsø Palm and Amanda Award for her previous short AMAZON in 2014.
- Another fun short is the film ARTICHOKE by director Lorentz Celo, which stars Bjørn Sundquist and Atle Antonsen, says John-Kristian Dalseth.
In addition to the short and documentary films in competition Films from the North also features the programs Young Directors / Student Films as well as three "Special Screenings" entitled Alternate Reality, Refuge and The Native Voice. The ladder features the film THE VOICE OF THE NORTH, a documentary about Norwegian singer Anneli Drecker and her work to get her PhD about the art of sining, and her search for the native voices around the world.