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New Finnish films go straight into the charts


- Led by Xavier Picard’s Moomins on the Riviera, from Finnish author Tove Jansson’s comic strips, the weekend’s number 1, 2 and 3 are all local

New Finnish films go straight into the charts
Moomins on the Riviera by Xavier Picard (© Handle Productions Oy, Pictak Cie)

Moomins on the Riviera [+see also:
film profile
– French director Xavier Picard’s €4 million, 2D hand-drawn adaptation of Finnish author Tove Jansson’s comic strips – took 28,500 admissions at 121 cinemas during its opening weekend, reaching 35,000 viewers including previews and topping the Finnish charts.

“Judging from this result, we should exceed 150,000 tickets sold,” said Katarina Nyman, general manager of Finland’s Nordisk Film, which also released the number 2 and 3 in the charts: Finnish director Dome Karukoski’s The Grump [+see also:
film profile
and Swedish filmmaker Leif Lindblom’s Finnish production of The Raspberry Boat Refugee. “Our local films generated close to 62% of the weekend’s total attendance,” she added.

“Exit polls show that children and families flocked to the theatres to watch the Moomins, but we also managed to get teenagers and audiences in their 20s into the cinema; now come the school holidays, and there is little competition with other family films, so the lifetime of the movie looks promising.”

Staged by Finnish producer-director Hanna Hemilä, of Handle Productions – who also co-directed – and Picard’s Paris-based Pictak Studio, Moomins on the Riviera is currently screening at the BFI London Film Festival (on 11 and 18 October) and France’s La Roche-sur-Yon International Film Festival (on 19 October), before the French launch on 13 February 2015, through Gebeka Films.

The 77-minute feature is ready with Finnish, Swedish, French and English dialogues; Paris-based Indie Sales has so far closed deals for Switzerland (with Praesens), Israel (Orlando), the Middle East (Shooting Stars), Japan (Phantom) and Hong Kong (Edko), while Benelux is next, according to head of sales Nicolas Eschbach.

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