More than 200 international film professionals - producers, buyers, sellers and festival programmers - have registered for the Nordic Film Market, running between Jan 31-Feb 3 during Sweden's 31st Goteborg International Film Festival, which starts today.

This year's programme includes 20 recent Nordic features and 12 works-in-progress, such as Danish director Nils Malmros' Heartaches (Kærestesorger), shortly to conclude a three-year production schedule for Nordisk Film, and Icelandic director Valdis Oskarsdottir's Country Wedding (Sveitabrúdkaup), which Fortissimo Films has acquired for worldwide sales (outside Scandinavia).

Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal, who plays the lead in Swedish director Lukas Moodysson's Mammoth currently shooting at Trollhättan's Film i Väst, are among the visitors at Göteborg, which has scheduled 450 films from 67 countries, 40-some seminars and numerous other activities before it wraps on Feb 4.

Bernal will introduce Deficit, his directorial debut screening in Göteborg's main sidebar, New Mexico, comprising 11 new features with six first films. He will give two master classes, one about his own work, one with his actor colleague, Diego Luna, and producer Pablo Cruz.

US Queen of the Indies, Parker Posey, has also been confirmed with her director, Zoe Cassavetes, for their festival entry, Broken English; so has Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien for another master class. More than 100 international guests have registered for the showcase.

Nine Swedish shorts have been nominated for one of the international festival circuit's largest prizes, awarded by the Swedish Film Institute and Bratek, the Swedish trade association of production facility companies: the winner recieves $157,000 (Eu107,000) cash and services.

'When discussing films we always talk about the director and the writer, rarely about the producer,' said Ali Boriri at Stopp - Stockholm Postproduction - which has instigated a producer's prize worth covering the developing of the winner's next feature, worth app $78,500 (Eu53,500).

Nine local novella films participate in the competition organised by the Swedish Film Institute and Swedish public broadcaster, SVT for the $31,130 (Eu21,125) prize. SFI and SVT will also announce which filmmakers will each receive $233,375 (Eu158,365) to realise next year's entries.