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Helsinki’s Love & Anarchy sets audience record – again

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- More than 100 international film professionals attended the 27th Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy, which sold out a third of all screenings

Helsinki’s Love & Anarchy sets audience record – again

“The buzz was strong, and obviously we had many audience favourites in the line-up: Whiplash, Boyhood, 20,000 Days on Earth [+see also:
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, Two Days, One Night [+see also:
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…” said Sara Norberg, executive director of the Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy, when the 27th edition of Finland’s largest film event came to a close on Sunday (28 September), having taken a record 61,500 admissions, up 3,000 from last year. 

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A total of 20,000 tickets had been sold before the festival started, and in the end, one-third (140) of all screenings had been sold out, including US director Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, which closed the event. “It was indeed a memorable moment when 20-year-old lead actor Ellar Coltrane went on stage,” Norberg added.

Polish director Pawel Pawlikowski’s multi-award-winning Ida [+see also:
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interview: Pawel Pawlikowski
interview: Pawel Pawlikowski
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– Poland’s official candidate for the Oscar nomination for Best Foreign-language Film, and the first feature that UK-based Pawlikowski made in his native country – received the Audience Award and will return to Helsinki’s Orion Theatre in November.

For the first time, more than 100 international film professionals attended the event – 70 joined the 200 Finnish participants in the Finnish Film Affair, the three-day (23-25 Sept) industry programme for sales agents, festival programmers, distributors, TV buyers and press.

Ten new Finnish films and seven works in progress were pitched by directors and producers; Klaus Härö’s The Fencer, Selma Vilhunen’s Hobbyhorse, Petri Kotwica’s Cross Your Heart and Joonas Berghäll’s Mother’s Wish “seemed to raise special interest”, according to the festival’s artistic director, Pekka Lanerva.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association gave Norberg and Lanerva a plaque of recognition and appreciation for the showcase, which will tour films from the 2014 programme at seven venues until 6 November. Next year’s festival has been scheduled for 17-27 September.

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