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LevelK boards Finnish comedy ‘Games People Play’
Read more about LevelK boards Finnish comedy ‘Games People Play’ here
September 19th 2019

LevelK boards Finnish comedy ‘Games People Play’

Cast includes The Innocents’ Laura Birn; project presented at Finnish Film Affair’s works in progress this week.

Venla Hellstedt and Elli Toivoniemi produce for Finland’s award-winning female-focused production company Tuffi Films, whose credits include 2019 Berlinale Crystal Bear winenr Stupid Young Heart. The deal marks the first collaboration between LevelK and Tuffi.

Jenni Toivoniemi makes her feature film debut following award-winning shorts such as The Date and The Committee.

Games People Play is a bittersweet comedy about a group of thirtysomething friends regressing to their teenage selves during a surprise birthday party at a seaside summerhouse.

The project is being presented as a work in progress at this week’s Finnish Film Affair in Helsinki.

Jenni Toivoniemi said, “The tone I am aiming for is the combination of ridicule and darkness with warmth – a heart-warming satire if you wish. I strive for the combination of strong characters on the edge, painfully raw humour with heart and an element of danger.”

Published in Screen Daily on September 18th. Read the entire exclusive here.

"H is for Happiness" wins CinefestOZ $100,000 Film Prize
Read more about "H is for Happiness" wins CinefestOZ $100,000 Film Prize here
September 2nd 2019

"H is for Happiness" wins CinefestOZ $100,000 Film Prize

CinefestOZ Film Festival has announced H is for Happiness as this year’s winner of the highly coveted $100,000 Film Prize.

H is for Happiness, directed by John Sheedy and produced by Julie Ryan, Tenille Kennedy and Lisa Hoppe, was awarded Australia’s greatest film prize during a star-studded ceremony tonight at Australia’s premier destination film festival.

Sheedy, Ryan, Kennedy and Hoppe were presented with the award this evening by the Hon David Templeman, Minister for Culture and the Arts, as part of CinefestOZ’s dazzling Gala Night celebrations in Busselton, in Australia’s South West.

“It’s a real honour to be here tonight to accept the Film Prize on behalf of the H is for Happiness team,” Kennedy said. “It was such a treat to screen to our hometown audience this morning.”

“I’d like to thank ScreenWest, Lotterywest, WA Regional Film Fund, MIFF Premiere Fund, Screen Australia, Film Victoria, Universal and LevelK.”

Sheedy added: “This is incredible. It’s such a prestigious prize. The competition was so tough. There were five amazing films, I saw all of them. To be chosen in such good company is wonderful and to be here at CinefestOZ it’s amazing.”

”Published in Cinema Australia on September 2nd. Read the entire article here.


LevelK believes in "Maria’s Paradise"
Read more about LevelK believes in "Maria’s Paradise" here
August 15th 2019

LevelK believes in "Maria’s Paradise"

‘Maria’s Paradise’ Included in Toronto’s Contemporary World Cinema

LevelK has picked up Zaida Bergroth’s “Maria’s Paradise,” ahead of its screening at Haugesund’s New Nordic Films and at Toronto’s World Contemporary Cinema section.

Bergroth is an habitué of the Toronto International Film Festival and a favored Finnish director for programmer Steve Gravestock who has praised in the past her “sensitivity and intelligence,” displayed in her previous films “Last Cowboy Standing” and Toronto picks “The Good Son” and “Miami.”

Her latest feature “Maria’s Paradise” is set in the 1920s in Finland and is based on a true story. We follow charismatic cult leader Maria Åkerblom as she leads her group of devout followers to a remote house in Helsinki.

Among them is the adoring teenager and orphan Salome. Maria is sentenced to prison, accused of violent crimes, but manages to escape and re-joins her devotees. Meanwhile, Salome has befriended a street girl, Malin, and is torn between her newfound freedom and Maria’s dangerous all-consuming love.

Published in Variety on August 13th. Read the entire exclusive here.

Czech / Latvian co-production "The Pack" started shooting
Read more about Czech / Latvian co-production "The Pack" started shooting here
August 1st 2019

Czech / Latvian co-production "The Pack" started shooting

The highly anticipated coming of age drama Smečka / The Pack, directed by first-time Czech director Tomáš Polenský, started shooting in Zlín on 24 July 2019. The film is set in the world of ice-hockey, where the hero becomes a target of tough bullying. Copenhagen-based LevelK has already acquired world sales rights.

“We are thrilled that LevelK acquired the rights for The Pack already at the script stage”, Julietta Sichel from 8Heads Productions told FNE.

Prague-based 8Heads Productions is producing in coproduction with Latvia’s EgoMedia, Moss &Roy, IS Produkce, Sleepwalker and Magiclab from Czech Republic. The budget is 1 m EUR.

Published on Film New Europe on July 30th. Read the entire exclusive here.