It is a great honor for me to receive this Lifetime Achievement Award from the Women's International Film & Television Showcase, it only saddens me that my husband, Tony Blanco, cannot be with me to share this moment, as he would be as honored and proud as I am.
I congratulate you on the beautiful initiative to support and celebrate the dedication, passion and integrity of women in film everywhere, and I thank TheWIFTS Board for considering me worthy of this precious award. I am very sorry to be unable to receive it in person. Thank you!
THE WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL FILM & TELEVISION SHOWCASE
DEC 5th 2015 WEST HOLLYWOOD
Passion & Integrity Commerce & Creativity Equality Not Hierarchy
Hanna Sköld - Sweden
Best Director Award – Granny's Dancing On The Table
Hanna Sköld Writer - Director
Hanna Sköld is the recipient of TheWIFTS 2015 Best Director Award for Granny's Dancing On The Table. A dynamic and contrasting pairing of traditional narrative storytelling and animated sequences alternate to build the world of harsh reality and family folkloric fantasy, the world of Eini, a young girl who dreams of escaping from the forest of isolation where she lives with her abusive and controlling father. Ms. Sköld brilliantly defines Eini's parallel and polarizing universe which is rife with sad whimsy, childhood fears and internalized dreams in a captivating and heart-wrenching drama that travels beyond borders into a blaze of freedom for only the brave to endure.
In the film Granny's Dancing on the Table, I explore mechanisms behind domestic violence, because I want to understand how violence travels through generations, ending up in a situation like the one between Eini and her father. I also explore what resources we as humans have to survive extreme situations of isolation, violence and abuse.
I believe that the nature and our imagination are some of our most important resources, and basically this is also why I do film, because film is for me an extension of our imagination.
I have experience of domestic violence myself, and this gives me the urge to talk about this subject. Everybody is a victim in a situation of domestic violence, also the perpetrator.
The reason I used dolls and puppet animation is because the animations serve for me as an enchanted layer, the feeling that there is a mysterious reality, somewhere in between dream and awakening. Something that touches the memories, the longings, the forgotten, and the subconscious. I would say that Granny is actually the power of the subconscious, a recourse for survival that Eini conveys, and we all convey, and I wanted to find a way to, in a child's way, approach those thoughts.
At the same time, the simplicity of the animation is for me an effective way to tell the story of brutal events; the dolls have to bear parts of the violence that the men exercise, kind of like when a child uses her dolls when she plays, to shape and process difficult events in life.
My motivation has many dimensions. One of them is about the story. I grew up with very little connection with other people, except from my closest family, and I know what it's like to feel outside the world. This is why I am deeply engaged in the themes of identity and our relation to the rest of the world.
For the same reasons I'm also deeply engaged in how we tell stories. I work with crowdfunding and crowdsourcing because I believe in participation and the power of collaborative creativity.
When we create spaces where people can share their personal stories we simultaneously create possibilities to let the stories bring people together, which can lead to cooperation instead of competition.
When we open up the creative and economical process, and makes it a little more transparent than it used to be, the audience becomes co-creators instead of consumers.
They will be personally engaged in the project which will mean a lot for the marketing and distribution, but also for the story. I believe that when the creative energy of many people unites in a project, new stories and new ways of telling them can be born.
I started with audience collaboration when I released my first film, Nasty Old People, on the front page of The Pirate Bay. The film was distributed by the audience in many different countries, and translated by the audience to 18 languages, and the audience organized live screenings. That experience was quite overwhelming and that's also why I wanted to keep working with the audience in many different ways.
Granny's Dancing on the Table is Hanna Sköld's second feature film, and her recent short Lady Crush had its premiere at Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas. Hanna is exploring new ways to create, finance and distribute her films through interaction with the audience, using transmedia and crowdfunding. She started her work with audience participation during her online distribution of her first feature film, Nasty Old People.