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PRODUCTION / FUNDING Latvia

Juris Poškus's new feature 24 Hr Sunshine in post

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- The helmer's upcoming fiction film was shot in Latvia and in Tiksi, a remote village in the Russian Arctic

Juris Poškus's new feature 24 Hr Sunshine in post
24 Hr Sunshine by Juris Poškus

Latvian filmmaker Juris Poškus is now working on the post-production of his new film, entitled 24 Hr Sunshine. An alumnus of the California Institute of the Arts, Poškus is best known for his award-winning documentaries 110/220, Angels of Death and But the Hour Is Near as well as for his fiction films Monotony and Kolka Cool.

The story, penned by the director himself in tandem with Alexandr Rodionov (The Ninth), follows a man called Martin, who wants to quit his job after having become financially prosperous. Thus, he sells his business but ends up facing a haunting question: what is next? Realising that he doesn’t have any big dreams, and frustrated with his wife and her family, Martin joins a motley crew of tourists heading to the North Pole. Stuck in a remote village in the Russian Arctic, he starts a half-hearted relationship with Olga, a local tour guide. Far away from his everyday routine, Martin starts to contemplate the idea of never coming back.

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The main cast members are Andris Keišs, Jeppe Beck Laursen, Kristine Kruze, Trond Halbo and Julia Volkova. The technical crew includes DoP Martin Jørgensen Edelsteen, editor Paula Popmane, production designer Toms Grinbergs and costume designer Ilze Grickus. The feature was shot in Latvian, English and Russian, with filming taking place on location in Latvia and in Tiksi, a remote village in the Russian Arctic.

Commenting on his project, Poškus told Cineuropa: “The need to have a dream is an obscure but essential drive in a person’s life. Inspired by travel diaries by Harijs Sils, a Latvian adventurer, the film is an exploration of the idea of making a mark, a unique achievement, that would give the character a certain uniqueness in his own eyes. This poses a question – how much are our dreams really our own? How much of what we strive and hope to achieve is associated with social recognition, tied into a cultural and social construct of achievement and success? From that, the North Pole is just a symbol, representing a certain ‘zenith’ in one's life that lacks any other symbolism. The global tourism industry has banalised the uniqueness of achievements. With certain financial resources, one can reach any place – the North Pole, Everest, even the Moon – in comfort...”

24 Hr Sunshine is being produced by Riga-based outfit FA Filma and backed by the National Film Centre of Latvia, the country's film agency. It will be released on 15 August 2021.

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