The long-awaited documentary a-ha - The Movie will have its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York in June. Also screening is Sisters on Track in the Viewpoint section and the short The Kicksled Choir.
The Norwegian documentary has been long-awaited and postponed from 2020 due to the ongoing pandemic. Now the audience in New York will be the first to experience the film.
-We are many who are happy that the story of our first major musical pop export article has finally become a documentary. We are very proud that it now has its world premiere at the prestigious Tribeca film festival. I am sure that the film about a-ha will find an affectionate audience all over the world, in the same way as their music, says Kjersti Mo, CEO of the Norwegian Film Institute.
- Having lived half a year in New York before and having a fairly close relationship with the city, it's a extra cool to have a world premiere right here, just a few blocks from where Paul in a-ha lived for many years, says producer and co-director Thomas Robsahm.
About a-ha The Movie
Over almost five years, the film team has travelled with a-ha, telling the full story of how three young men followed their impossible dream of becoming world-famous pop stars outside Norway - a country known for "zero points" in the Eurovision Song Contest.
When "Take On Me" reached number 1 on Billboard in the US in 1985, the dream came true. Or did it? The band was not prepared for what the success could bring, including tension between the three band members.
In the film, we get close to the strong personalities of Morten Harket, Magne Furuholmen, and Paul Waaktaar-Savoy - Norway's largest pop success of all time. They are still hugely popular, 35 years after the breakthrough, and "Take On Me" passed one billion plays on Youtube in the summer of 2019. The documentary is scheduled to premiere in Norway on June 18th.
- Tribeca and New York is a brilliant arena for the world premiere of the film, 36 years after Take On Me topped the American charts. We look forward to sharing the film about Norway's biggest pop culture icons with the audience, both in New York and here at home, says producer Yngve Sæther
- It's great that the audience in New York gets to experience a-ha on the big screen in June. A-ha is still big in the US, all screenings at the festival will take place outdoors so I imagine that this can be a fantastic festival experience, says the Norwegian Film Institute's Manager for International Relations Documentary Films, Toril Simonsen.
The documentary is a co-production between Motlys, Fenris Film, and the German music film producer Kinescope. Thomas Robsahm is the screenwriter and also co-director, along with Aslaug Holm.
Thomas Robsahm has previously produced and directed numerous feature and documentary films, including directing the music documentary Punx.
Aslaug Holm is an award-winning and acclaimed director, film photographer, and editor. Her previous film, Brothers, in which she films and follows her own two sons for eight years, has participated in 65 festivals.
First Hand Films distributes the film in cinemas around the world. It will be shown, amongst other countries, in Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Belgium, Finland, Israel and Sweden.
Tribeca Film Festival was started by Robert de Niro in the triangle below Canal Street in Manhattan after the terrorist attacks in 2001 and has grown to become one of the world's largest film festivals. This year's festival takes place June 9 - 20. It will take place as a hybrid festival, with both physical screenings and an online program.
Sisters on Track in Viewpoint section
Sisters on Track is the story of three homeless sisters from New York who become running stars and have their lives turned upside down. Now the film about them will be screened in their home town in the Viewpoint section in Tribeca.
The film is directed by Dutch Corinne van der Borch and Tone Grøttjord-Glenne, and produced by Anita Rehoff Larsen and Tone Grøttjord-Glenne for Sant & Usant as a Netflix Original.
Sant & Usant has been working on the project since 2016, and in the film we also get to see the sisters' own mobile footage.
About Sisters on Track
Three homeless sisters Tai (12), Rainn (11) and Brooke (10), are discovered by chance by a trainer from the Jeuness Track Club for girls in Brooklyn, New York. Without any previous sports experience, they start training with the club, and in the course of a year, all three girls win medals at the national junior Olympics. Overnight, they become a national sensation and are introduced to an exciting world of TV talk shows and celebrities. A world very far away from the homeless center where they live with their mother, Tonia. Sisters on Track is a childhood story about hope, sibling love and belonging, as three young sisters run against all odds towards a brighter future.
The film is scheduled to hit Netflix this fall.
The Kicksled Choir
Torfinn Iversen's short film The Kicksled Choir (Sparkekoret), which was shortlisted for an Oscar nomination earlier this spring, will be the only Norwegians short to be shown in the short film program in Tribeca.
The film is about a ten-year-old boy who out in a winter landscape ends up in a dilemma when his father gets into a brawl with one of the village's refugees.
About director and screenwriter
Director Torfinn Iversen has a film education from Nordland Art and Film School, and has made several short films that have been shown at festivals both in Norway and internationally, including Levis Hest (2011), Tilbake (2012), Unspoken (2014) and Blikkstille (2015) . In 2017, he debuted with his first feature film, Oscar's America, which was shown in the Generation program during the Berlin Film Festival. His previous short film, Myrhull (2018) was nominated for Amanda, and has won several awards.
Producer Julia Andersen has previously produced the short film Myrhull.