FINNISH FILM AFFAIR presents: Nordic Flair 

Launched in 2017, Nordic Flair is an initiative of the Finnish Film Affair, offering career development opportunities for Nordic talent. Each year, we also honour an exceptional Nordic talent working internationally with the Nordic Flair Award. In 2017-2018, the initiative focused on acting, with the Nordic Flair Award being awarded to Pilou Asbæk  in 2017 and Laura Birn in 2018, respectively. We’re extremely thrilled to announce that director extraordinaire Lone Scherfig is the recipient of Nordic Flair Award 2019.


Nordic Flair Award 2019:
Lone Scherfig

Born in Denmark, Lone Scherfig studied at the University of Copenhagen and the National Film School. She began writing and directing commercials and television films. Her debut feature film, The Birthday Trip, screened in the 1991 Berlin International Film Festival’s Panorama programme. Her Dogme 95 film, Italian for Beginners, premiered and won awards all over the world, and brought her international renown. After her first English-language film, Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself, Lone has mainly worked in the United Kingdom, first with the three times Oscar nominated An Education (2009), and during the last ten years with One Day, The Riot Club and Their Finest. Her most recent film, The Kindness of Strangers, a Danish- Canadian-Swedish-German-French coproduction which opened the Berlinale this year, will have its Nordic premiere at HIFF.

“From Italian for Beginners and the Dogme 95 movement to the English affairs of An Education, Their Finest and many more, Lone Scherfig has been making meaningful and finely crafted films for over 30 years. A director and a writer, she is one of the most respected and successful Nordic filmmakers working today. Known for her versatility and warmth, Lone Scherfig is a true inspiration.” Anna Möttölä, CEO of Helsinki International Film Festival


This year, the Nordic Flair program had three target groups – actors, directors and film music composers.

To continue our work with actors for the third year, Finnish Film Affair has invited six top international casting directors to participate in this year’s Nordic Flair program, curated to help and further actors’ international career development. This year, the group of actors has been limited to 15 Nordic actors with solid international credits. Results from previous years are already trickling in with some actors cast in international productions thanks to the Nordic Flair programs of previous years!

For directors, the Nordic Flair program offers this year Nordic Flair Award recipient Lone Scherfig’s masterclass as well as a workshop on how to pitch, mingle, meet & greet internationally, while still remaining true to one’s own character. How to ‘sell oneself’ without ‘selling out’, as we Nordic people in general don’t like to brag about our achievements and may thus sometimes be too humble about our skills and credits. The directors will do speed meetings with other talent as well as enjoy a networking lunch with the casting directors.

Film music composers are a new group this year. As we continue to enjoy the national cash rebate incentive, more and more co-productions are materializing. This creates opportunities for film music composers, as the film’s music is generally a convenient ‘piece of the puzzle’ that can be commissioned from one of the co-producing countries. Due to a strong culture of music education from childhood, Finland and the Nordic countries have many skilled musicians and composers, both classically trained and coming from the pop/rock scene. As part of our industry panels day on Thursday, September 19th, a panel discussion will be held on film music themes.

The Nordic Flair program is supported by Nordisk Film & TV Fond.