The Danish film industry is currentlychurning out comedies with a touch of seriousness, and with Lone Scherfig'sserious dogme comedy Italian For Beginners taking a Silver-Bear inBerlin, other producers are hoping to follow suit.
Among the new (romantic) comedy projectsare veteran Gert Fredholm's One Hand Clapping from Zentropa and HellaJoof's feature debut Shake It All About from Angel Films both set forfall releases.
The projects set to shoot in the comingmonths include Peter Bay's The Man Who Couldn't Say No from Bald Film,Soren Fauli's Fiaskospiralen from Cosmo Film, Niels Arden's Fukssvansen(working title) from Zentropa, Oliver Kanafani's feature debut Mr. Rightfrom Zeitgeist as well as veteran Soren Kragh Jacobsen's English-language Skagerrakfrom Nimbus Film.
All films are supported by the Danish Film Institute(DFI), and only last week DFI's film-consultant Vinca Wiedemann backed BechFilm's new comedy Okay with $899,000 (DKR 7.5m), making the total budget$1.58m (DKR13.2m). Other backers include national broadcaster TV2/Denmark andAngel Films, who will also handle distribution through Angel Distribution. Thefilm will be directed by Jesper W. Nielsen (The Last Viking) based on ascript by Kim Fupz Aakeson, who also penned the local box-office sensation TheOne And Only, which scooped some 850.000 admissions in 1999.
Popular actress Paprika Steen plays the lead, as anenergetic housewife, mother and social counsellor. When her father, played byveteran Ole Ernst, becomes fatally ill, she insists that he moves into herfamily home, which is not very popular with either her husband (Troels Lyby) orher teenage daughter. At the same time the university teaching husband startsan affair with a student, and her homosexual brother (Nikolaj Kopernikus) wantsto become a sperm-donor. The filmmakers call it a typical Danish family.
Okay is produced by PeterBech for his Bech Film with AngelFilms' Mogens Glad and Poul Erik Lindeborg acting as executive producers. Itshoots on location in Copenhagen from March.7 - April 27 2001, with a plannedrelease for February 2002.