Telefilm Canada has announcedit will back two features, Bille August's Explosion, a Canada-Denmark-UK coproduction, and TheJournals of Knud Rasmussen, aCanada-Denmark coproduction co-directed by Zacharias Kunuk,director of 2002 Camera d'Or winner Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner.
Explosion, based on Canadian journalist Robert MacNeil's novel"Burden of Desire", is a historical drama of a love triangle set against theaftermath of the 1917 Halifax Harbour explosion. August will direct thescreenplay by Rudy Wurlitzer (Little Buddha) and Bond writers Neal Purvis and Robert Wade. Explosion will be produced by Gabriella Martinelli ofToronto-based Capri Films, Paul White ofUK-based Audley Films and Michael Lunderskov of Moviefan Scandinavia.August, Purvis, Wade, White and Lunderskov collaborated on Return To Sender, which premiered at Toronto. Capri Releasing willdistribute Explosion in Canada.
Rasmussen chronicles the encroachment of Christian Europeaninfluence on the Arctic community of Igloolik. Like Atanarjuat, the film will marry Inuit storytelling with modernfilmmaking. Kunuk and Atanarjuat screenwriterNorman Cohn will write and direct while sharing producer credit with VibekeVogel of Copenhagan's Barok Films. Odeon Films will distribute in Canada.
In a statement, Telefilm nationalfeature film sector head Ralph Holt said the two films combined "solid andoriginal scripts, seasoned creative teams, and an approach to the art andbusiness of filmmaking that is in line with Telefilm's objective of helpingCanadian cultural products to connect with audiences."