I have fond memories of Kortfilmfestivalen Grimstad (or The Norwegian Short Film Festival as it's called in English). And it is not just because I was lucky to be one of the jurors in 2017. Let’s admit it; jurors are usually cared for like royals at festivals. Returning to an event after you’ve been treated in such high regard always feels like seeing a former lover you were really into holding hands with someone else. It just hurts.
The film program we had to judge at the time was slightly different from what it is nowadays as they used only to screen national films. It was compelling to discover the Norwegian care for the short film format. Today, the program reflects a division into national, international, documentary, and music video competitions to which the selection committee adds a series of special programs.
Rather impressive was also my experience in the small town of Grimstad, where despite its size and the lack of hotel accommodation, all the Norwegian short film industry professionals flock to the place, hosted by the kind citizens of the city. Not only is this a photogenic place, located in a beautiful fjord and populated by fishermen. It is also a perfect hub for a cozy festival, where every location is nearby, and the attending professionals are easy to meet and chat with. If you want to mingle with the Norwegian industry and some international guests under the late spring sun of early June — meaning there will be light until very late — this is definitely the place to be. Indeed, a perfect networking event is the boat trip sailing around Grimstad’s fjord while you’re served freshly-fished raw shrimps. That is what I call quality of life at the festival.
Although I’ve been invited several times there in recent years, I’ve never managed to return. I need to, one day. I have always justified it with overlapping work commitments; however, it might be not to feel that sadness of meeting with a former lover.
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