Jonas Gardell (b. 1963) is one of the greatest and most distinctive voices in Swedish literature
today. Since his literary debut in 1985, the novelist, playwright, screenwriter and comedian
Some of his work as a screenwriter includes the TV Mini-Series My Life as a Comedian (1992),
the feature film Like It Never Was Before (1995), the TV Mini-Series Those Half Hidden (2009),
Don’t You Ever Wipe Tears Without Gloves (2012) and The Days the Flowers Bloom (2019). His
latest production is the feature film My Life as a Comedian that will premiere later this year.
Gardell has time and again mesmerized the audience with moving, stylistically immaculate prose
that ricochets off the page. His unique mixture of humor and heartbreaking episodes fetched from
his own life as a member of the LGBTQ community has made Gardell a trendsetting authorship in
Scandinavia. Deeply personal, utterly unfazed by taboos, and with a humor you can’t guard
against, he is finally back with the national No. 1 bestseller, In Memory of an Unconditional Love.
Anne Bjørnstad is a Norwegian scriptwriter, director and executive producer. She has co-created and co-written several drama series with her partner Eilif Skodvin, most notably “Lilyhammer”, seasons 1-3 for NRK and Netflix (2012-2015) and the HBO Original sci-fi-series “Beforeigners”, that will premiere on August 21st. Since 2016 Anne has also served as Head of Scripted at Rubicon TV.
Executive Producer, Creator of scripted drama, and media entrepreneur. Alex has produced TV shows both in US and in France. Former Vice President of Canal+ Group under Pierre Lescure, Chairman and CEO of CanalNumédia & VivendiNet, is career has been devoted to premium media strategy and content production. Hie is currently executive producer of Le Bureau des Legendes (The Bureau) for Canal+ and developing US based scripted series.
Elly Vervloet is the international drama executive of VRT, the Flemish public broadcaster (Belgium). As part of VRT’s drama strategy, it is the ambition to make high quality drama with international appeal and potential. Therefore, Elly takes up responsibility to find international financing, to set up international co-productions and to look for international cooperation in general. It is her role to build an international network and share her expertise within the company, in order to co-create a sustainable drama strategy that reinforces the local ecosystem. After a degree in Communication science at the University of Leuven, Elly began her career at VRT in 1994. After 12 years of working in the news department, she became program manager for Eén (channel one) in 2006, and later was vice channel manager for 6 years. During that time, she was commissioning editor for news, reality and fiction. She commissioned, amongst others, Salamander and Hotel Beau Sejour. Both series were very well received internationally.
Dariusz was one of the first independent producers in Eastern Europe. He is a producer, director, scriptwriter, and founder and CEO of Apple Film Production, a leading Polish production company, renowned for its features, documentaries and drama series, as well as for its successful collaborations with international partners. Since 1990 he has produced and co-produced over 30 features, plus a similar quantity of full length documentaries and drama series, in cooperation with most European countries, as well as the US and Canada, gaining over 300 international and national awards. He is President of the Polish Film Academy, Vice-President of the European Producers’ Club, and a member of the European Film academy. In 2004 he created ScripTeast, the screenwriting program for the best Eastern European scriptwriters. Currently he is directing The Pleasure Principle produced by Apple Film, the first ever high-end international co-production drama series originated and shot in Eastern Europe, in co-production with Canal+ (Poland), Czech Television and Star Media (Ukraine).
Sanne Nuyens (1981) studied screenwriting at St Lukas Brussels and cultural
studies at KU Leuven. She started out writing award-winning short films with
co-writer Bert Van Dael. In 2017 tv series “Hotel Beau Séjour” aired, a series
which she co-created and co-wrote for Belgian production company
DeMensen. “Hotel Beau Séjour” won the public prize at Séries Mania-festival
and was the first Flemish series to be bought by Arte France & Germany. The
series was distributed worldwide as a Netflix original. After “Hotel Beau Séjour”
she co-created and co-wrote the court room drama-thriller series ‘The Twelve’
with Bert Van Dael for Eyeworks/Warner Bros Intl. The series won the award
for best screenplay at Canneseries in 2019. It will air on broadcaster Eén this
fall. Currently she is developping the second season of “Hotel Beau Séjour” as
a writer and creative producer.
Independent TV producer from Czech Republic, former vicedean at Film and TV Academy in Prague (FAMU), CEO and founder of the first CEE festival for the best original TV and webseries called “Serial Killer“ (www.serialkiller.tv).
Kaya Pakaslahti is a Finnish screenwriter and director. She graduated from film and TV school Arcada in 2018 and made her debut with the web drama series, Bathroom Stories, which premiered on Yle, NRK and DR this summer. Inspired by feminist theory, Pakaslahti examines a playful and experimental approach to storytelling, attempting to challenge the male gaze on the naked female body by emphasizing the characters emotions.
Photo: Frida Lönnroos
Palmquist has 25 years of experience in the TV and film industry, having worked as Film Commissioner at the Danish Film Institute, Commissioning Editor for Drama Series & Feature Films at SVT, CEO of Nordisk Film & TV Fond and Head of International Sales at TV2 Denmark. She has also worked as a producer at Fine & Mellow, Acquisition Manager at Nordisk Film, Head of PR and International Sales at Zentropa and Trust Film Sales and at Filmkontakt Nord. Hanne holds a master’s degree in Culture and Esthetics and a bachelor in World Literature.
Tarmo Jüristo has worked as a playwright and dramaturg since 2011. He has been involved in different productions with Von Krahl Theatre and Theathe NO99 in Estonia. Together with EERO EPNER, he was an author and co-producer of “THE BANK”, the TV drama series produced for the Estonia’s 100 year anniversary. Tarmo is the Head of Management Board at the think tank Praxis.
Dominic Schreiber is Global Drama Executive at leading independent drama producer and distributor, Reel One Entertainment. Headquartered in Montreal with offices in London, Los Angeles and Vancouver, Reel One Entertainment develops, finances, produces and distributes commercial scripted programming for a worldwide audience. Dominic was previously Executive Producer, Scripted, for Motion Content Group, and was EP on the Sky 1 drama The Last Dragonslayer. Prior to that, Dominic was International Development Manager at Channel 4, where he was responsible for developing the channel’s drama co-production strategy and helped to structure its first international co-production with Kudos Film and Television, for the hit supernatural drama series Humans. During his time at Channel 4, Dominic built up a development slate of ambitious drama projects, including a major new adaptation of A Tale of Two Cities, from leading British screenwriter Alan Bleasdale; Rainmark Film’s period crime thriller The Frankenstein Chronicles; and Australian supernatural series The Kettering Incident. He was also instrumental in the acquisition of the Bafta-nominated series Les Revenants.
Tarja Kylmä graduated from ELO Film School Finland in 2006 and has since worked as screenwriter in both feature films and documentaries (e.g. Sisters Apart 2008, Salla – Selling the Silence 2010, Hyväntekijä 2014). She enjoys stories and storytelling, also as writing mentor and script consultant. Her recent work is the Finnish-Chilean co-production Invisible heroes, a drama series in six parts taking place during and after Pinochet’s military coup in 1973.
Michael Nakan is a founding partner of Clipper Media Capital, an international production company based in London with an emphasis on the fast-growing Asian marketplace. In Clipper’s first year it has set up two UK-China co-production features, one alongside Harry Potter producer David Barron and the other with the British Film Institute; as well as putting a world-building sci-fi into development with a leading Asian broadcaster and closing a licensing deal with China’s Neflix equivalent Tencent Video. Clipper presently operates a diverse slate of international TV projects in multiple languages. Michael was formerly Creative Executive at Joe Wright’s Shoebox Films. Before then, he worked alongside showrunner Beau Willimon on Netflix’s House of Cards, on the marketing team at HBO for hit shows like Game of Thrones and True Detective, and for There Will be Blood producer Scott Rudin.
Pelle Heikkilä is a Finnish-Swedish actor. After dropping out of school and being a mischief-maker for many years he finally at the tender age of 26 understood that he needs an education. The only University level education he knew of that would accept students without a graduation was the Theatre academy of Helsinki. So, without any background in acting he applied and was excepted. After five years of studying he graduated as a Master of Arts in 2010. He worked at theatre Viirus in Helsinki for five years before switching into acting in front of the camera. Now he has acted in 31 TV and movie productions. He is best known for his roles in Invisible Heroes, Jägarna and Aallonmurtaja.
Paul Aguraiuja is a creative entrepreneur with years of experience in combining strategy with creativity and leading large complex creative teams towards the goal. Almost half of his work life Paul was the Senior Producer and Managing Director of Teater NO99, now he spends most of his time as the CEO of the full-stack marketing agency IMPACT 80/20. While off-duty, Paul produces internationally acclaimed tv-series.
Liisa Penttilä Asikainen
Liisa Penttilä-Asikainen has worked as a producer since 2001 and founded Kaiho Republic in 2013. Penttilä-Asikainen has produced awarded short films, TV series, and feature films and has beeen actively co-producing, e.g. Lars Von Trier’s Dogville (2003), Peter Greenaway’s Eisenstein in Guanajuato (2015) and upcoming Zaida Bergroth’s feature film Maria’s Paradise (2019). Most recent tv-series Invisible Heroes (6 x 50´) was released in Finland April 2019 and ganster drama Reindeer Mafia (8 x 42´) is currently in development.
Gerda Kordemets (born 1960) graduated Tallinn University in 1986 as Theatre Director. From 1986 – 2011 she worked in Estonian Television and Estonian Public Broadcast as Director, Producer, Head of Cultural Department (1998 – 2006) and Head of Drama Department (2007 – 2011). Since then she is freelance writer and director working for television and theatre. She was co-writer and dirctor for awardwinning TV-series “The Class, life after” produced by Estonian Public Broadcast. She also has directed TV-series “Alpin House” (2012, Estonian Public Broadcast) and “In The Other Side” (2013, produced by U8). From 2014 to 2018 she was a screenwriter and director of crime-series “The Last Cop” and “The Siberian Cop”, both produced by BEC. Last summer Gerda Kordemets directed her first movie, comedy “The Men” (produced by Apollo Film Productions). She has also written and directed several theatrical plays
Mika Kurvinen is a director and screenwriter from Finland. He has directed TV series e.g. Welcome to Texas (10×42`) and Soundtrack of Love (2 seasons, 22×58`). His latest work is the first Finnish-Chilean co-production INVISIBLE HEROES (6×52`) where he was a conceptual director. Mika Kurvinen studied film directing in Helsinki Film School in Aalto University.
Scriptwriter Merja Aakko created crime thriller All the Sins (Kaikki synnit) with Mika Ronkainen. The series won the 2019 Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize for outstanding writing of a Nordic drama series. Before entering the film and TV industry Merja worked 15 years as a journalist, specialised in human interest stories and social issues. All the Sins is her debut as TV drama screenwriter.
Mika Ronkainen was selected among Variety’s Ten European Directors to Watch in 2013 for his documentary film, Finnish Blood Swedish Heart (Laulu koti-ikävästä), which was awarded with two Finnish Oscars (Jussi Awards) for Best Documentary and Best Music. His films have screened internationally at several A-list film festivals – including Sundance, Karlovy Vary, Tribeca Film Festival, Toronto Hot Docs, and IDFA. In 2016, Ronkainen made his theatre debut in Oulu City Theatre, where he adapted and directed a stage version of the documentary Finnish Blood Swedish Heart.
Eero Epner (born 1978) graduated Tartu University as an art historian, worked as a dramaturg in Theatre NO99 from 2004 til 2018. Collaborations with various directors in the frames of appr. 70 productions. In addition to being a dramaturg has also curated exhibitions of modern art, written articles and monographs of various artists, has written theatre criticism, edited an art magazine etc. “THE BANK” was his first work as a scriptwriter. It was a collaboration with Tarmo Jüristo, with whom he has also co-written the political musical “Savisaar”.
Margit Keerdo-Dawson has worked in the film industry since 1998. She studied cinematography and directing in Tallinn and went on to study screenwriting at the Northern Film School in the UK. She was the screenwriter of the award-winning 7-part drama series The Class: Life After and the 6-part TV drama and feature film Zero Point. Currently, Margit works as a screenwriter, script consultant and teaches screenwriting at Tallinn University. She’s one of the founding members and the chairwoman of the Estonian Screenwriters’ Guild.
Ilkka Matila is one of the most profiled film producers in Finland. He has produced 21 feature films, numerous shorts, serial drama and documentaries during the past 30 years. He has been awarded eg. the Finnish Jussi-Prize for Best Film, chosen to be the Producer of the Year in Finland and invited as the member of the Jury to the Stockholm and Tallinn Film Festivals. Ilkka is the member of the European Film Academy, the producer’s network ACE and the co-owner of Matila Röhr Productions.
Hyppe Salmi has been working as an executive producer for young audiences, targeting mostly for teens. She is fascinated about the storytelling, no matter the genre or the platform. Curiosity drives her forward. Last six years Hyppe has been working with a small but enthusiastic team in Finnish Broadcasting Company reforming teens television content into on-line services. They serve the audience all year round and publish content daily. The team has succeeded to create a firm fan base in social media platforms and have had several big hits too. Hyppe is especially proud of the award-winning transmedia series #lovemilla and Yle´s game changing campaign Mental. Mental combined daring drama, social media influencers and a helpline service to help teenagers and young adults with their mental health problems. It was a great example that storytelling can be meaningful, benefit the society and at the same time entertain and emphasize your feelings.
Anni works as Head of International at Audiovisual Producers Finland – APFI, Finland’s producers association, where her aim is to internationalize the country’s audiovisual industry. APFI’s vision is to help producers expand their international networks, help them finance, realize and sell their content globally, as well as increase the number of international co-productions and international productions shot and serviced in Finland. Anni has extensive experience within the audiovisual industry, particularly in internationalization efforts. She has previously worked for production companies, film festivals, film commissions, export initiatives, with funding, and as a translator. After growing up in the U.S., she later earned an MA in Film Studies from Queen Mary University of London and King’s College London.
Liselott Forsman works as executive producer of international drama at Yle. She is the head of the Eurovision Fiction Expert Group and a long time Northvision co-producer. Her MA combines film, drama and TV studies. She has a background in fringe theatre and radio drama, in heading and producing fiction, culture and children’s programming. She’s been a speaker and moderator at film and TV forums on five continents and lectured at European master educations. She was recently appointed the new CEO of the Nordisk Film and TV fond, where she will start working in 2019.