The process of preproduction for Knud Bull: A Black Sheep (working title) has already been going for a few years since I came across the story. Part of my reason for the visit to Norway is to do some more research on the subject as well as to identify and contact the resources/funding bodies here that might help bring the story to screen.
The Nordic Docs festival was a good introduction into the documentary scene in Norway and gave me a few contacts that I will pursue. Today I have also sent mails to The Norwegian Bank (Norges Bank) and author of the Knud Bull biography “Straffen” Ragnar Kvam Jr – requesting meetings to discuss the project. I am also looking forward to catching up with Jo Raknes who will give me introductions to the commissioning editors at NRK – the Norwegian ABC.
At this stage I am also looking at a quick trip to Bergen next week if I can set up some meetings there. – So all in all it is getting pretty busy and I am not yet a week in the country!
Another three docs to round off my festival:
Det Røde Eplet – Vanja Larsen/Fredrik Nielsen
Great observational doco on the junkies and former junkies that are attached to the street-mag “=Fredrikstad”. Very effectively presented in Black and White – a great insight into the struggles of people caught in the heroin subculture.
Forest of the Dancing Spirits - Linda Västrik
Amazing Anthropological footage from the life in a pygmy village in the Congo 2004-12.
No Word For Worry – Runar Jarle Wiik
Well presented and beautifully shot doco on the last of the Moken – a people that live on boats around the islands on the Thai/Burma border.
It has been great to immerse myself in documentaries for a few days and to meet some Norwegian doco makers and hear how they produce and fund docos here. Here are some of the interesting people that I met and intend to stay in contact with:
Runar Jarle Wiik - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0927916/
Ellen Astri Lundby - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2851422/
Maida Hals - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm6175259/
Just saw an absolutely stunningly beautiful film “Efter Dig”
One of the joys of documentary at festivals is the scope for storytelling outside of the broadcast box. In the planning stages of my documentary it is easy to constantly consider what will appeal to the funding bodies in terms of content and style. There is so much more than this. The Masterclass yesterday with Jørgen Leth (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J%C3%B8rgen_Leth) was an insight into the kind of filmmaker that has inspired the likes of Lars Von Trier and a reminder that the pioneers that we read about in film studies were both brave and uncompromising. I need to see this:
Drove an hour south from Oslo to the lovely town of Fredrikstad for the Nordic Docs festival.
So far I have met some great local film makers and seen some pretty compelling docos:
The Spirit of ’45 – Ken Loach - a great portrayal of socialism at work in Britain after the war
Everyday Rebellion – The Riahi Brothers – a study of the worldwide peaceful protest movements from occupy Wall street to Femen
Joikefeber – Ellen Astrid Lundby – a young girls discovery of her Sami identity through traditional Joik singing
Flickan Från Auschwitz – Stefan Jarl – a harrowing portrait of an Auschwitz survivor and her protest against Israeli action against Palestinians