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Two ‘strong women’ in Danish cinema receive Nordisk-Balling scholarship

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- In three years, Danish producers Sisse Graum Jørgensen and Louise Vesth (photo) – both with Zentropa Entertainments – have made nine features which have sold four million tickets in Denmark

Two ‘strong women’ in Danish cinema receive Nordisk-Balling scholarship

Danish producers Sisse Graum Jørgensen and Louise Vesth – both with Zentropa Entertainments – are difficult to keep from the headlines.

Graum Jørgensens production of Danish director Thomas Vinterberg’s The Hunt, which was last week (October 30) awarded the €64,000 Nordic Council Film Prize, is currently No 1 on the Danish 2013 charts, with 672,512 admissions; No 2 is Vesth’s production of Mikkel Nørgaard’s The Keeper of Lost Causes [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Eugenio Mira
film profile
]
, which has sold 624,100 tickets since released on October 13.

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Yesterday (November 6) – on the anniversary of the world’s oldest film company, Denmark’s Nordisk Film – the two producers were presented with Erik Balling’s Travelling Scholarship (not much in cash: €6,700, but in prestige of joining other Danish top filmmakers). Balling, who died in 2005, created such national treasures as the TV series Matador and The Olsen Gang film franchise.

“There has been a lot written about how men dominate Danish film – and true, the majority of directors are men. But right behind them, as in all good and efficient relationships, are strong women,” said managing director Jan Lehmann, of Nordisk Film Biografdistribution, who emphasised Graum Jørgensen and Vesth’s “rare gift of being able to combine quality and commercialism.”

Within the last three years the two producers have signed nine Zentropa features, which have taken four million admissions in Denmark and reached an international turnover in excess of €67 million, winning an Oscar, a Golden Globe, two Silver Bears in Berlin and two awards in Cannes.

Their upcoming productions include Pernille Fischer Christensen’sSomeone You Love, Susanne Bier’s A Second Chance, Kristian Levring’sThe Salvation (Graum Jørgensen); Lars von Trier’s Nymphomaniac [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Louise Vesth
film profile
]
, Mikkel Nørgaard’s The Absent One and Christian E Christiansen’s On the Edge (Vesth).

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