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Baltasar Kormákur Interview

Baltasar Kormákur interview is an article by Jordi Pujolá with the support of Icelandic Mountain Guides and RIFF Reykjavik International Film Festival

Don´t miss the awards of the Festival below

Baltasar Kormákur interview

Read the full article in Spanish

Read the article on Morgunblaðið about this blog

Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur en RIFF

Baltasar Kormákur interview is part of the project La Contra Islandia that tries to put in contact Icelandic, Catalan and Spanish culture, read more interviews

Check all you can do in Iceland

Pictures by Guðný Hilmarsdóttir @gudnyhilmars

Interview Baltasar Kormákur

Baltasar Kórmakur Samper is one of the most acclaimed film directors (also actor and producer) in Iceland (Reykjavik, February 66) and he has won endless awards. He started in the  best school, the theatre

Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur un catalán en Reykjavik
Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur y Jordi Pujolá dos catalanes en Reykjavik

Biography Baltasar Kormákur

Baltasar´s father is the talented Catalan painter Baltasar Samper who lives as well in Iceland

The saga of the Baltasars goes on and the son of Baltasar Kormákur is Baltasar Breki Samper, but the strip is very high

The big documentary of the summer in Iceland 2018

Director of the successful serial Trapped

Baltasar Kormákur is also the director of the addictive serial Óferð (Trapped); we are looking forward to watching the second sequel (not only in Iceland because it has been translate it in several languages)

Some great movies by Baltasar Kormákur

Adrift an amazing movie on the Reykjavik International Film Festival

Baltasar Kormákur and the main actress in the film introduced Adrift on RIFF

Even though the plot is about the typical wreck based on a true story, the film keeps your attention until the end (very shocking by the way) and it has surprising twists. The actors are lovely. I strongly recommend it. The audience of Cinema Paradis clapped a lot on the third of October 2018

Baltasar Kormákur Samper and the main actress (she was very different with dark hair), Shailene Woodley, answered the questions of the audience after the screening in front of the most important Icelandic media

A complicated shooting on the sea

The actors said that to charge money for performing in Fidji islands was a kind of a dream; however, after 3 months in the open sea, filming 14 hours per day changed their minds

After puking the whole day the acting was more realistic

Baltasar Kórmakur said the actors performed better at the end of the day, when they were exhausted and had vomited all the food

Baltasar was professional sailor

Shailene said Baltasar was the only crew member who felt well all the time on the sea, the explanation is he was a professional sailor in Iceland and was on the verge of going to the Olympic Games. He also shot in really extremely conditions when filming Everest

Interview Baltasar Kormákur

Jordi Pujolá, writer and blogger in (offical press at RIFF) had a private interview with Baltasar

  • Do you speak Spanish or Catalan?

I speak Spanish but not Catalan. My father didn´t talk to me in Catalan and my mother is Icelandic

  • What language do you speak to your father, Baltasar Samper?

In Icelandic

Baltasar Kormakur interview in RIFF Adrift Shailene Woodley in RIFF
Baltasar Kormakur interview with Shailene Woodley in RIFF

Catalonia independence

  • What do you think about the independence of Catalonia?

Well, it´s a very delicate issue, I wouldn´t like to bother anyone and least of all my father (laughs), but I think every country should decide about its autonomy. Icelanders are very sensitive about this situation because we are a small country that became independent from Denmark not time ago (1947), so we always support these kind of little nations (the poet Sjón said the same when I asked him the same question)

Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur en RIFF festival Intrenacional cine Reykjavik
Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur en festival de cine RIFF de Reykjavik

Spanish Cinema

  • How do you like Spanish cinema?

Well I met Victoria Abril directing 101 Reykjavik; I know the most famous from Hollywood and my favourite director is Carlos Saura

Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur entrevista de Jordi Pujolà, con Iceland Rovers y RIFF

Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur el mejor director de Islandia hijo del pintor Baltasar Samper
Entrevista Baltasar Kormákur el mejor director de Islandia de padre catalán

Awards RIFF 2018

  1. The Golden Egg/ Vesna by Nathalia Konchalovsky.


  1. International shorts: Special mention / Black Line by Mark Olexa, Francesca Scalisi.


  1. Best International short / Gulyabani by Gurcan Keltek.


  1. Best Icelandic short / Jörmundur by Maddie O´hara, Jack Bushell & Alex Herz.


  1. A different tomorrow/ América by Erick Stoll and Chase Whiteside.


  1. New Visions: Special mention / Styx by Wolfgang Fischer.


  1. The main prize of the RIFF festival, The Golden Puffin goes to Knife + Heart by Yann Gonzalez.



Firstly, the members of the jury would like to thank all the filmmakers that so generously shared their stories with us. It was both a privilege and a pleasure to watch eight film from ten different countries. Each of these films offered either a window into the realm of human emotions, personal relations, composite cultures, or a peak into the heart of the filmmaker himself – and in some cases, all the above. These films touch upon brave and complex themes, brave and complex characters, brave and complex issues. We might indeed live in a brave new world, but at the same time we also live in a complex one. Thus, sometimes – the most complex of issues, need the simplest means for them to become clear and transparent to us. And such is the case with the premise of the film, that we, the jury, unanimously agreed upon. Few things are more fragile and precious as the relationship between a parent and a child; regardless of their age. To dive into a theme of a broken family that seeks healing, in the form of a short film – is not only difficult – it ́s almost mad. Yet, the filmmaker manages to deliver a deeply complex personal story between a mother and daughter, and their journey from utter lack of connection, to a new beginning – in an effortless, humorous and credible way. We the jury, thus find it quite fitting, to hand the Golden Egg, to a story of a mother ́s love to her daughter. The Russian film Vesna, directed by Nathalia Konchalovksy, is not only a beautiful film, but also quite of a storytelling achievement, full of vivid characters, impressive performances and sophisticated filmmaking.




Our prize for the Best Icelandic short goes to a film we felt was a beautiful, reverent ode to an interesting subject: the jury is proud to award Jörmundur, directed by Jack Bushell and Nicole Stock.

In the International Shorts competition, the jury would like to first award a Special Mention to the film Black Line, directed by Francesca Salisi and Mark Olexa, who told a big story through subtle but powerful means.


In a diverse and a frequently revelatory shorts program, one film stood for our jury as a unanimous and signifiant accomplishment. For its formal daring, thematic scope, and sociohistorical insight, the jury awards the International Shorts top prize to Gulyabani, by Gürcan Keltek.




Our jury from Riga, Reykjavík and New York all connected equally with this soulful story of family guilt, responsibility and most of all, love. We were truly impressed by this film from new directors set in a small town in Mexico. The Award for Best Documentary goes to… América.




For technically brilliant direction and an honest performance by Susanna Wolff, we give Honorable Mention to STYX by Wolfgang Fischer for his economical storytelling that illustrates the moral dilemma of Europe.



A playful homage to cinema and a celebration of queer subculture, director Yann Gonzalez defies labels using confidence, humor and a thrilling juxtaposition of love and loss. A juicy treat for all senses, the Golden Puffin is awarded to KNIFE + HEART.

Por jordipujola

Escribo novelas, creo contenidos relacionados con Islandia y llevo a cabo un proyecto de unión de culturas española e islandesa