– I was a little excited when I read about this. It got a bit unmusical when we just finished Aura, and public funds have been used to maintain cultural life, which is pretty much a broken neck hanger. And then there are few who are in Hollywood on luxury. It doesn’t look good, says Fribs-Sigbjohn-Framens, who sits on the Storting Federal Parliament’s Cultural Committee.
The giant luxury “Norwegian” villa he’s talking about is located in the Hollywood Hills and has stunning views of Los Angeles. It is rented for three days for 312,000 kroner and is used as a base to promote the Norwegian film in the USA. The background is the Oscar nominations for “The Worst Man in the World” and the Honorary Oscar for Liv Ullman, and receptions are also arranged for them.
In total, just under 1 million kroner is spent on the Hollywood project, according to the Norwegian Film Institute. Most of the money comes from the state treasury.
Framnes is reacting to the signal effect this sends, at a time when many are struggling with rising electricity and gasoline prices.
I record that Culture Minister Annette Tribergstoen thinks that’s great, but maybe it has a little to do with what defines ordinary people, says Framence.
The Norwegian Film Institute contribute about NOK 550,000 and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs NOK 250,000, while the Tromsø International Film Festival (TIFF) and Firke spit NOK 175,000 and NOK 90,000 respectively. Tiff is behind the Fiction Norway event which takes place at the Norwegian House, where Norwegian film actors showcase their projects to industry owners from the USA.
Can one be less luxurious?
The Norwegian Film Institute and the Minister of Culture indicated that the money could return to the state treasury through future income from Norwegian film projects.
Yes, it may be, says Framence.
But he adds:
One question is whether you can go down to the standard and get the same money back. Maybe you can do it with a little luxury. Especially for the Labor Party, which in turn cares about ordinary people. Maybe they can create something that ordinary people can achieve, not a luxurious life in Hollywood.
The director of Kjersti Mo at the Norwegian Film Institute defends the decision to rent the luxury villa.
– Mo tells NTB that the reason we arranged Fiction Norway and rented this house, was to create a new and permanent industry for the audiovisual sector in Norway.
She believes that the event contributes to creating value and jobs in Norway, and notes that 130 meetings will be held at home these three days.
– We’ve got local folks mapping out the alternatives and looking at their costs to be able to facilitate all of these events being posted here. She says this is the market price.
Attracts men with big money
The Minister of Culture also advocates the use of funds. She visited the house on Thursday at two events.
– Everything in Hollywood is very unconventional, but somewhere they had to have these meetings, and I think it would probably cost you about renting a conference hotel in the city there. But here you will attract men with big money, and you will raise the Norwegian film industry forward. So it is an investment.
She realizes that it may sound unmusical to people with high electricity bills and gas prices.
Hollywood luxury is far from the reality in which we live. But like I said, non-food items are here for a reason. This is because the Norwegian film was nominated for an Oscar, and there is scope for the opportunity to attract large sums of money to invest in the Norwegian film.
“Infuriatingly humble web fan. Writer. Alcohol geek. Passionate explorer. Evil problem solver. Incurable zombie expert.”