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“We're very proud of our film culture”
Culture & Life

“We're very proud of our film culture”

3 min. 08.03.2012 From our online archive
Discovery Zone is coming to a close, and one more highlight awaits with the much-anticipated screening of Danish film Teddy Bear. Wort.lu/en sat down with Danish ambassador Louise Bang Jespersen to talk about the festival.

Discovery Zone is coming to a close, and one more highlight awaits with the much-anticipated screening of Danish film Teddy Bear. Wort.lu/en sat down with Danish ambassador Louise Bang Jespersen to talk about the festival.

Danish cinema has become something of a household brand among cinéphiles in recent years. But there is more to it than Lars von Trier, with Discovery Zone showing some highlights of contemporary Danish film.

One of those highlights is the film Teddy Bear, coming to Luxembourg straight from Sundance where it played to good reviews and earned a Directing Award nomination. “I'm very much looking forward to seeing it,” says Jespersen.

“Extraordinary” children's programme

But also animation film The Great Bear, which was screened to school children in French, Luxembourg and Danish with English subtitles, was among the ambassador's favourites. “It was amazing that they took a Danish animation film, and hundreds of kids got to see it.”

Bringing the world of film close to a young audiences, “is very important,” says Jespersen. “I've done a marvellous job giving children the chance to really explore the cinema, to talk to actors and directors, and really engaged them very actively. It's something very extraordinary about this festival.”

The cooperation between the Finnish and Danish embassies with the Discovery Zone team seems to have been an easy one. “I'm very impressed by the energy and dedication that you feel from the people working on this festival,” says the ambassador.

Facilitating contacts with the Danish film institute, as well as the Danish cultural institute in Brussels was one of the roles of the Danish embassy in the process of making the Open Discover happen. “We're very proud of our film culture, so it's very good that we can show it to other people.”

Danish culture in Luxembourg

Now living in Luxembourg for some one and a half years, Jespersen was quite surprised to find the cultural offers she did in the Grand Duchy. “It was a nice surprise. There are so many cultural activities here, and the film festival is very ambitious.”

While the festival certainly is a chance for the Danish community to see films from their home country, Jespersen hopes even more that it is a way for the other nationalities in Luxembourg to discover films from Denmark.

“Cultural activities are an important part of the embassy's work because art and culture are very much part of your identity. They make you see who you are and who other people are,” she says.

But it's not just the cultural activities Jespersen enjoys about Luxembourg. “There are many beautiful places in Luxembourg. Walking through the City you can really feel the history. I also do a lot of walking in the countryside. Together with a walking club, we go go out at least once a month.”

More activities on the horizon

Having lived in London and Brussels, Jespersen says she doesn't really miss anything about these places. Instead, “I think when you come to a new place you think about all the new things you can experience. So I'm more curious to discover more about Luxembourg.” Still, if there is one thing she does miss about Denmark, “it's the sea.”

With over 2,200 members of the Danish community in Luxembourg, Jespersen said she felt very welcome in Luxembourg. “It's a well knitted network we have here,” she says.

The upcoming birthday of Denmark's queen on April 16 will mark an occasion for celebration, but there is much more in store, as the country continues to hold the European Presidency. Among other events, Luxembourg will see Danish design headed to Luxembourg in the summer, for the Index exhibition about design to improve life.

For more information on the embassy's activities, please consult the website and don't miss your chance to catch the screening of Teddy Bear on March 8 at 6.30pm followed by an after-party at Carré Rotondes with Danish band Giana Factory.