Runar Jarle Wiik
Runar Jarle Wiik started shooting and directing during his enrollment at The London International Film School in the mid-eighties, at the time being the youngest student to be admitted. There he worked on the Fuji Film Award-winning MacHeath with John Hurt as 1’st AD, and got Norwegian cinema distribution for his 6’th term short film The Jingle Knife with Sverre Anker Ousdal. Graduating with additional distinctions in Cinematography led to a host of assignments as for shorts, commercials and documentaries, sometimes in combination with the role as Director. In the early nineties he was given the opportunity to become the youngest Norwegian feature film Director of his time with the film The Bikini Season – a rare poetic-philosophical comedy for Norsk Film AS (The Norwegian Film Corporation Ltd.) about two friends trying to break through to success by selling bikinis in the mountains.
In recent years his interests and focus lie predominantly on documentaries that address the plight of indigenous peoples, and his two latest films as D.O.P.; White canvas – Black hyena, about an artist who has to learn to rely on the Massai people to survive on the Savannah, and Suddenly Sami, about a middle aged woman finding out her mum’s been hiding the fact that they’re Sami all her life, have won Best Art Documentary in Paris (White Canvas – Black Hyena) and Best Film – Indigenous Topic in Nepal and Kautokeino (Suddenly Sami), the latter also having received honors at TIFF (Tromsø International Festival).
As a Writer of fiction Runar has developed 9 Norwegian feature film scripts, 5 of which have been funded by the Norwegian Script Development Fund at NFI (Norwegian Film Institute), a real eye-of-the-needle achievement each time. One of these, Voyagers, on the clash between oil companies and an indigenous population in the Pacific Ocean, he co-wrote with Riwia Brown, the New Zealand writer best known for the international success feature film Once Were Warriors.