AFI top award for Oscars nominee
by Annika Pham
Kissed By Winter [+see also:
film profile], the feature film debut of Sara Johnsen and Norwegian’s official entry for the foreign language Oscar race, was voted Best Film at this year’s American Film Institute (AFI) Film Fest in Los Angeles (November 3-13).
The Swedish leading actress Annika Hallin who has already won several awards for her performance in the film was in New York, attending the special screening of Kissed by Winter as part of the Celebration of 100 years of Norwegian cinema at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, when she heard the news. "Our trip to the US has been unbelievable" she said. "I got to meet my idol Liv Ullmann here in New York (also at the Lincoln Center) and my teenage daughters got to meet theirs, Johnny Depp and John Malkovich at the AFI Film festival in Los Angeles. I am deeply moved and grateful to the jury for awarding this film the top prize. We made a film about human experience, told in a raw, honest, unglamorized way. It is not a beautiful fairytale, the audience takes a journey and experiences the universality of suffering and grief of which no-one is immune".
Producer Christian Frederick Martin (Friland Film) who was on hand to receive the award in Los Angeles said: "I saw so many good films at the AFI Film Festival and it is unreal to win this Award in such a prestigious competition. I am very rpoud of my director and cast and it was great to see the response from the American audiences".
The top Award and the very positive reaction both from the US press and the audience during the AFI Film Fest are indeed excellent marketing tools for the sales company NonStop Sales AB and production outfit Friland Film who can start building the promotion campaign in the US in this pre-Oscars nomination period, that will gain its momentum on 31st January, 2006 when Kissed By Winter will know if it is among the five candidates for Best foreign language films in the Oscars race.
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