The NFI has entered into an agreement with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and the Ministry of Culture (KUD) on renewed three-year funding for Sørfond. The annual fund budget has been increased to NOK 5 425 000, from NOK 3 000 000 previously.
Funding will now be available for productions from all countries on the DAC list – the OECD Development Committee list of countries and territories eligible to receive official development assistance.
– We are pleased to announce a new and strengthened Sørfond, which is now available to applicants from even more countries. This strengthening has been requested by the industry, and will make even more productions eligible for support from Sørfond, says Dag Asbjørnsen, Head of International Relations at NFI.
The funding guidelines are being updated and will be made available on nfi.no. Application deadlines will be announced at the end of april.
Committed to human rights
Sørfond is funded through the multilateral affairs department of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, under the Section for Human Rights, Democracy and Gender Equality. This change of MFA section has given Sørfond a stronger focus on human rights, democracy and gender equality.
– These are values of great importance to the international film production community. We appreciate that this is now clearly supported by Sørfonds purpose, says Dag Asbjørnsen.
Support for 72 productions
Since its inception in 2011, Sørfond has provided support for 72 productions from countries where film production is limited for political and economic reasons. Productions supported through Sørfond are regularly being selected at major international film festivals.
– Sørfond contributes towards realising film productions that face different challenges than what we are used to in the Norwegian film industry. This funding scheme helps to ensure that stories from all over the world are being told, and are reaching audiences both locally and internationally, says Dag Asbjørnsen, Head of International Relations at NFI.
– Sørfond is also giving Norwegian producers unique access to participation in international coproductions, providing invaluable exchanges of experience and increased international cooperation, says Asbjørnsen.
Sørfond is administered by the Norwegian Film Institute in cooperation with the Films from the South festival (Oslo Festival Agency).
Sørfond's overall objective is to strengthen freedom of speech and human rights in DAC list countries where these rights are restricted for political, social or economic reasons.
To achieve this purpose, Sørfond seeks to reinforce film as cultural expression, and promote diversity and artistic integrity, through supplying production funding to independent film producers in DAC list countries. This includes supporting productions and producers that are promoting womens rights and equality.
Sørfond is also contributing towards increased cooperation between Norwegian film producers and film producers in DAC list countries, and contributing towards increased access to international networks for financing and funding.
Sørfond funding is available to fiction and documentary films where the main producer is located in a DAC list country, and in a co-production agreement with a Norwegian minority producer. The grant application must be submitted by the Norwegian minority producer.