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Sections & Films


Category: Edition 2020

Calm Vega (9), her wild sister Billie (5) and their outdoorsy daddy go for an overnight hike in the wilderness. The trip is all fun and games until Daddy falls into a mountain crack and hurts himself badly. Unable to move, he tells the girls to go and find help. Together Vega and Billie set off on a mission across the wild Norwegian nature, and must brave wild animals, exposure, each other and their own fear. They meet a number of grown-ups, but none of them are able to help.

Original Title Tottori! Sommeren vi var Alene
Category Official Competition
Section Elements +6
Tipology Feature Film
Duration 78'
Production Year 2020
Nationality Norway
Directed by Silje Salomonsen, Arild Østin Ommundsen
Screenplay ilje Salomonsen, Arild Østin Ommundsen
Director of photography Arild Østin Ommundsen
Editor Arild Østin Ommundsen, Reidar Ewing
Costume Design Maria Brinch
Sound Håvard Rosenberg
Music Thomas Dybdahl
Main cast Bille Østin
Vega Østin
Thomas Skjørestad
Oddgeir Thune
Nina Ellen Ødegård
Produced by Gary Cranner
silje salomsen 


Silje Salomonsen was born in 1978. She is a Norwegian actress, musician and film director from Stavanger, known for her work on films like NOW IT’S DARK, IT’S ONLY MAKE BELIEVE and MONSTER THURSDAY. She plays the leading role in Jannicke Systad Jacobsen’s new film 110% HONEST, and is a frequent collaborator of Thomas Dybdahl, who also has scored her upcoming directorial debut SISTERS.

 Arild ostin Ommundsen


Born in 1969, Arild Østin Ommundsen studied directing at the University College in Stavanger. After making short films in the last half of the 1990s – amongst others BEFORE SUNRISE, for which he won the Golden Chair award at the Grimstad Short Film Festival in 1999 - he made his debut as a feature film director with the indipendent hit MONGOLAND in 2001, a film he also co-wrote. The low-budget indie comedy was a hit with critics and audiences alike, and won the honorary award The Golden Clapper of the National Film Award Amanda Committee in 2001.

His second feature film, MONSTER THURSDAY, was selected as the first Norwegian film ever to participate in a competition at the Sundance Film Festival. It won the Audience Award at the Mannheim International Film Festival, and has been screened at numerous festivals around the world. Østin Ommundsen has since then directed his third feature, RAT NIGHTS, in 2009 (a thriller from the Norwegian oil industry), as well as made several short films, commercials and music videos, before taking on new challenges in directing a childrens film; the third and final installment of the Twigson-trilogy – one of the most successful movie franchises in Norwegian cinema history – premiering fall 2011.

Director’s statement

«Sisters - The Summer We Found Our Superpowers» is a film with a deceptively simple and straight forward plot. Two sisters who have to fend for themselves in the wilderness to save their father who has fallen into a mountain crack he is unable to get out of. To save him, they must cooperate and support each other and they must have faith in magic. Magic becomes another word for the power they can derive from themselves. It is an important point that in the end that it is the girls themselves who save Dad - and that they do not get help from other adults.

The film was shot with our own daughters playing the parts that to a certain degree were inspired by their own personalities. Vega and Billie have worked with us in developing the story and other elements of the film. In the shooting of the film, we worked with the girls by presenting situations to them that they had to deal with and filmed them working it out rather than giving them a script. Instead of controlling everything, we let the girls try to solve the task on their own, and let the camera follow.

The dynamics between the two sisters is real. We wanted to capture ability of the four-year-old to stop and get lost in the smallest of details, to be in the present, and the eight-year-old who still possesses this ability, but also has begun to feel responsibility and the passing of time tug away at her. Since the young actors had contributed to the story and the situations, they knew very well where each scene was going, which also allowed for a certain amount of improvisation or free-styling, especially on on Billie’s behalf. We did not work with scripts in a conventional way, but used a synopsis as a starting point for working with the shooting of each sequence. After shooting some scenes we would edit them together, and continue the writing process. This went on for almost a year and a half. In the same way you might build a documentary in the editing room, we used the editing room as a writing room, a place where we could dream up new scenes and look for surprising and interesting connections, and think visually in a completely different and liberating way than a more traditional script-based production would have allowed.

We wanted to make a film that was different from the franchise-based, loud (and often animated) entertainment that dominate the cinemas and TV for kids of today. The film was made with a guiding idea that kids can understand and appreciate real scenes and original stories if they are presented with it, including stories where the outcome is not predictable. This is a challenge they can take. We wanted to make an original film that can inspire kids to believe in themselves and find their inner superpower, but also as filmmakers take responsibility to develop the cinema audience of tomorrow. We think it is an important and meaningful mission to teach children how to appreciate art and the telling of original stories and hope to inspire both active consumption of art and possible future filmmakers.”

Chezville (Norway)

international distribution
M-Appeal (Germany)

festival contact
Norwegian Film Institute (Norway)