Estonia’s ‘Melchior the Apothecary’ passes COVID milestone – C&E Europe News in Brief

Elmo Nüganen’s historical crime thriller “Melchior the Apothecary” has become the first Estonian film to break the 50,000 mark at the local box office in the two years of the pandemic. The film, released on April 11 by Hea Film, topped the box office with 57,456 admissions, according to Film New Europe.

The picture is the first part of a trilogy – the first time a film trilogy has been produced in Estonia. All three films were shot simultaneously in 2020. The second film in the series is set to hit theaters on August 19, 2022, and the third on October 14, 2022.

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Based on a detective bestseller by Indrek Hargla, “Melchior the Apothecary” tells the story of a medieval Tallinn apothecary, who has a knack for solving mysteries and is employed by the city to unravel a mysterious case of murder.

The film, which stars young Estonian actor Märten Metsaviir, was produced by four Estonian companies: Taska Film, Nafta Film, Hansa Film and Apollo Film Productions, and co-produced by Film Angels Productions of Latvia, InScript of Lithuania and Maze Pictures. from Germany.

Georgia admissions show increase in 2021
Admissions to local films in Georgia increased from 2,000 in 2020 to around 10,000 in 2021, while total admissions increased from 230,160 in 2020 to around 560,000 in 2021.

A total of 119 titles hit theaters in 2021, compared to 67 in 2020.

Gvantsa Garmelia, Marketing Director of Cavea Cinemas, said, “COVID-19 has severely affected cinema operations in Georgia. Cinemas were closed for most of 2020. The last movie was screened on March 16, 2020 and the doors didn’t open until April 8, 2021. It’s hard to compare 2020 with 2021, because in the first we didn’t We’ve only been able to show films for two and a half months, but the box office has been steadily increasing since opening in April 2021.

“The restrictions were in place from day one (only 50% of seats were allowed to be sold), and they remained in place until the end of 2021, affecting admissions. Regardless of that, people can’t wait to get back to cinemas. The biggest wave came around October 2021 when “Venom,” “Dune,” and the new James Bond hit theaters.

In 2021, the top three local films were “Negative Numbers”, directed by Uta Beria and produced by Magnet Films, “Brighton 4th”, directed by Levan Koguashvili and produced by Kino Iberica, and “Beginning”, directed by Dea Kulumbegashvili and produced by First Image.

American films dominated Georgian theaters in 2021: “Spider-Man: No Way Home” in the lead, followed by “F9” and “Venom: Let There Be Carnage”.

Croatian Film Days announces its program
The 31st edition of the Croatian Film Days will present 73 films, selected from 179 applicants. The event, a preview of short and medium-length films produced in Croatia, will take place in Zagreb from May 10-14.

Ten titles will compete in the animated film category, 15 in the documentary competition, 16 in the experimental film category, 16 in the fiction film category and 16 titles in the video competition.

- Credit: Courtesy of FNE

– Credit: Courtesy of FNE

Courtesy of FNE

A few feature films will be screened, such as the documentaries “Factory to the Workers” by Srđan Kovačević, produced by Fade In, “Windows” by Damir Radić, produced by Blank_filmski inkubator, and “Bigger Than Trauma” by Vedrana Pribačić and Marta Puhlovski, produced by Metar60.

Croatian Film Days is a national festival founded in 1991 and organized by the Croatian Film Association. The prizes are awarded by a jury, the Croatian Society of Film Critics, and the public.

This article is published in partnership with the online news service Film New Europe, which covers news from the film and television industry across Central and Eastern Europe.

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