UK producer John Cairns of Parkland Films left theNorwegian Film Festival in Haugesund yesterday with his new feature, Wide Blue Yonder, fully financed, havingrecruited Stavanger's Sydvest Film as Norwegian co-producer at the first NordicCo-Production Forum.

Cairns was one of the ten UK independent producers,pitching new feature film projects to potential co-producers in Scandinavia atthe forum, which concluded the 12th edition of New Nordic Films, the annual marketwhich this year attracted a record number of 300 participants.

"I am indeed very happy that Parkland Films got itsproduction in place - that it formed an alliance here, and was given access tolocations. It will also be an interesting test case, where we will see how aBritish production team working with a Norwegian a crew can make a film inNorway," said Film London CEO Adrian Wootton, whose agency co-organised theevent.

He added: "Some of the other producers, also withmore developed projects, have been able to make some rather rapid progress,meeting people here which it would otherwise take them much longer to find. Butfor all of them it was a useful fact-finding mission, because they did not knowmuch about the working conditions in the Nordic countries."

Wide BlueYonder is a black comedy about two elderly sailors who try touphold their promise to each other that they are buried at sea. The project wasoriginally a play by Hugh James, staged 10 years ago in London's West Endstarring Eric Sykes.

Directed by the UK's Robert Young, the $3.8m-$4.5m(Euros 3m-3.5m) English-language feature will shoot in the Haugesund reasonwithin the framework of the Norwegian-UK co-production treaty (which expires inMay 2007). It will be ready for delivery in January 2008, and will be sold byParkland Pictures.