“Battle of Narvik” was scheduled to be released on Christmas Day last year. But due to the lockdown, they decided to postpone everything for one year.
For a while it looked bright. The film, which they have been working on since 2017 and priced at NOK 77 million, was finally shown in Norwegian cinemas across the country.
But now the aura is back again.
So, Aage Aaberge, the producer behind the film, faces the same dilemma once again: Should the film be delayed again?
– I really hope we can show the movie as planned. It would be very difficult to put it off again, says Aberg.
“Biggest Crime” faced the same dilemma last year when it was due to be released in Norwegian cinemas.
They decided not to postpone the premiere, unlike Aaberge.
But with many cinemas closed across the country, particularly in Oslo and the surrounding areas, this has resulted in fewer cinemas than expected, says director Eric Svensson.
– Those I know in Oslo did not see the film in cinemas until long after many other films had appeared. It’s a movie that I always thought was good to watch together, but missed.
Do you want help from the Minister of Culture?
Our problem is that we are taking a huge risk. We have a large launch budget that we need to start using. But we don’t have a system that can absolve us of this danger, Aberg says.
The system he’s alluding to is the stimulus scheme from last year that has now been removed.
Therefore, Aaberge and Virke’s film productions have now sent a letter to the Ministry of Culture asking KUD to consider a number of measures.
Among other things, they want to reintroduce the incentive scheme.
– At the moment, we are completely alone with this responsibility, says Aberg.
In an email to NRK, Culture Minister Trettebergstuen writes that she is following the situation closely and that she will take the initiative to convene a meeting with the entire cultural industry to discuss the way forward.
– The compensation scheme for the cultural sector has already been rolled out throughout the year, and municipalities have the option to provide a Corona Certificate in lieu of infection control restrictions so that they can, among other things, carry out cultural events as usual. We will continue to pay attention to the cultural sector, and we will draw up plans when needed.
The cultural industry has struggled to win back the audience despite the reopening
Christmas parties and the theater still had many unsold tickets, which led to anxiety in Trettebergstuen.
Adresseavisen’s cultural commentator, Terje Eidsvåg, says the film industry has come out very well from the reopening.
– They are part of the cultural life that was able to come back after lockdown better.
He explained that films such as “Three Nuts for Cinderella”, “James Bond” and “The Worst Man in the World” achieved very good numbers in cinema.
– If you look at the numbers from the past few months, the industry is almost back to the time before the pandemic, says Eidsvåg.
But despite this, Aaberge fears that they will enter another dark time if the authorities decide to impose strict limits, such as one metre.
Then it turns out we’ve lost significant parts of our audience base, says Aberg.
Low risk of infection in movie theaters
But amid all this turmoil, there is a bright spot. fact Reports from England and Germany, which indicates the lack of infection in cinemas.
People are usually silent when they are in cinemas. Eidsvåg explains that it is likely to be one of those cultural events where the risk of infection is relatively small.
– But do you understand the perturbations of the zodiac?
– Yes. If there are national measures, much is at stake for such an extravagant Norwegian production.
Eidsvåg concludes that if there were no restrictions, Norwegians would have good cinema at Christmas in the future.
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