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The European Film Awards to be held in Reykjavik in 2020

The European Film Awards will be held in Reykjavik, Iceland in December 2020. This was announced today as a result of a consultation process between the European Film Academy, The City of Reykjavík and the Icelandic government. The ceremony will take place in Harpa Conference and Concert Hall, together with various side-events in connection to European film production.

Two other European cities contested for hosting the awards that are held every other year in Berlin and the year in turn in another European city. The European Film Awards were first granted in Berlin in 1988, in order to promote and support European film industry. Every year, the festival attracts many foreign visitors such as professionals related to the film industry and hundreds of foreign journalists.

This provides a great opportunity for Reykjavík to promote Icelandic art, culture and design, as well as marketing Iceland as preferred destination for film production. It is an important recognition of the Icelandic film industry, and places Reykjavik as an interesting travel and film-making destination.

Three Icelanders have received these prestigious awards: Composer Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson for the music in the film Children of Nature by Fridrik Thór Fridriksson and Björk Gudmundsdóttir as best actress in 2000 in Lars von Trier's Dancer in the Dark. Björk Gudmundsdóttir also won the People's Choice Award in the same year along with Ingvar E. Sigurdsson for his part in the film Angels of the Universe by Fridrik Thór Fridriksson. Additionally, the European University Film Award 2017, chosen by film students from across Europe, went to Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson for Heartstone.

The location is also a great recognition of Reykjavik and Harpa as a pliable and interesting location for international events of this magnitude. It is expected that around 1,400 guests will be present at the award ceremony itself, and live broadcast will be aired both here in Iceland and throughout Europe.

The timing is perfect, as December allows room for this great number of visitors and it is expected that this will have a positive impact both on Icelandic travel industry as well as providing a good opportunity of promoting Icelandic culture and art.

The European Film Award took place in Seville, Spain last year, but it has also been held in London, Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Warsaw, Copenhagen, Tallinn, Malta, Riga and Wroclaw.