All About Anna
Gry Bay, Mark Stevens and Eileen Daly star in the erotic feature film “All About Anna”, helmed by award-winning director Jessica Nilsson. A slice-of-life romantic comedy with explicit erotic scenes. It follows the Puzzy Power Manifesto developed by Zentropa in 1998, and is made by women, for women.
Zentropa is Scandinavia’s biggest film production company, best know for the Dogme-manifesto and for award-winning feature films such as Lars von Trier’s “Dancer in the Dark” and “Dogville” starring Nicole Kidman. It is the world’s only mainstream film studio also producing hardcore adult pictures, confirming Denmark’s position as a pioneering film making country.
“All About Anna” is produced by Marcella Lindstad from a screenplay by Anya Aims and Loretta Fabiana. Nicolas Barbano, Peter Aalbæk Jensen and Claus Sørensen served as executive producers. The behind-the-scenes creative team included director of photography Claus Lykke, editor Martin Bernfeld and bestselling composer/songwriter M. Maurice Hawkesworth.
In October 2006 “All About Anna” were nominated for two MEDIEN eLINE Awards; Gry Bay, who stars as Anna, was nominated as Best International Newcomer, and Mark Stevens, who stars as Johan, was nominated as Best International Actor. Previously, the film has been selected for the official programs at Zürich Film Festival and at the Io, Isabella International Film Week in Maratea, Italy. “All About Anna” is an attempt to create a new type of erotic film, based on real life rather than on the wish-fulfilling fantasies that characterize traditional sex movies. It portrays a type of woman with whom we all are familiar, fighting with problems most women know all too well. The film is also an attempt to integrate explicit sex as part of the storytelling and character development. Thus, the film’s sex scenes never come out of nowhere but are part of defining the characters and their relationships, just as you’d expect from a song in a musical or a pas-de-deux in a Bournonville ballet. Without the sex scenes, the film’s drama would fall apart. This was a particular challenge to the film’s cast, who had to cope with the traditional social and human traumas associated with having real sex in front of a camera. Fortunately the film’s actors and actresses managed to extent their dramatic performances way beyond the norm and truly managed to push the envelope, achieving new means of dramatic expression. The sex scenes were carefully planned and rehearsed prior to shooting, allowing the actors to stay in character through every embrace and caress.
Striving for optimal realism, “All About Anna” was shot on location in Copenhagen and Paris. The romantic prologue and flashbacks were filmed at sea in a Greenlandic icebreaker, a bittersweet conversation was shot in front of the Eiffel Tower, and the story’s emotional climax features such landmarks as Copenhagen’s Royal Castle. The scenes in Anna’s apartment were shot in the real apartment of actress Gry Bay. Here, the film’s first major unsimulated sex scene was performed repeatedly by Gry Bay and Thomas Raft in front of a huge window, witnessed by astonished neighbours while traffic and everyday life passed by on the busy city street outside. “All About Anna” marks a culmination of the gradual slide towards use of explicit images in art house cinema which was initiated by Lars von Trier’s Dogme- success “Idioterne” (aka: “The Idiots”).