18 Jul 2024
The Stockholm International Film Festival Junior: 15th-20th April
Creative Arts Family Lifestyle

The Stockholm International Film Festival Junior: 15th-20th April

Is your child between the age of 6-16? They will love the Stockholm International Film Festival Junior, where they can watch new films from different parts of the world for free throughout the week. Best of all, we have tickets to the gala day to give away!

Stockholm International Film Festival Junior: Mobile Workshop at Gamla Stan. Photo credit: Jasmina Aleksic

The Stockholm International Film Festival Junior has the goal of showing quality films from the whole world to children and young adults, films that rarely reach the usual movie theater repertoire. The screenings are mixed with original creations and discussions. ‘Junior’ wants today’s youth to be able to influence and advance the cultural world.

The mobile workshops: The YLC low-down

Your Living City followed one of the mobile workshops, held at the Estonian school in Gamla Stan. I shadowed the multi-talented Cathy de la Cruz, currently earning her second Master of Fine Arts at the University of Arizona, who was selected to run the workshops for the Film Festival. From storyboard idea to execution of a spy film trailer, she led the group of boys that day to understand the intricacies of making a film: having the vision of the finished product always in the mind’s eye, the technicalities of shooting scenes in a different order than the eventual film, the concept of empty space etc. It was fascinating to see the engagement of the boys (they brought their own props) and how much they learnt by doing. There was also the realisation that making a film involves a lot of waiting and re-shooting to get the right effect – it’s not all glamour, but it is incredibly useful, for budding filmmakers or otherwise. Cathy explained:

As mobile technology gets more advanced, that culture is more accessible and more popular everyday. So anyone can now pick up their phone and make a film. But the process of making a good one is an exercise in the art of problem-solving. You have an idea in your head and you have to make it come alive to an audience. It takes technical ability, mathematical precision in timing and editting as well as creativity and self-promotion and marketing. Children are more creative; we find the very young have no limits on their imagination, whilst the older the child, the more media influences you see in their work. So it’s a great way to find out about what your kids are into, as well as providing that spark of originality that many of us lose as we grow older.

The concept behind ‘Junior’ is that culture should be available to everyone, regardless of age. As well as providing workshops, the festival itself has a great programme with 38 films films having been made from  25 countries. There will be a screening of this year’s winner of the ‘1 minute film‘, which will be awarded on the last day of the festival. The screenings are free for all children and young people, the program is tailored to an audience of between 6 – 16 years and most of the films we show can not see anywhere else in the cinema in Sweden. With films from the entire world and interviews with actors, directors and others from the business we have an action-packed week in April to look forward to!


This year’s theme is power

Children and young people often feel powerless and find it difficult sometimes to influence their own lives. Many of the films are about children who are trying to take control.

Stockholm Film Festival Junior often show movies that end up in the middle of public debates. We think it’s important to show films dealing with current issues for young people and give them a foundation for a deeper discussion and understanding of what is going on in society today.

Git Scheynius, Festival Director

A selection from this year’s program:

Cause I have the looks by Frieder Schlaich (international première)

13 – year old Charo is an ordinary teen with best friends, boy problems and everyday life issue. But unlike most teenagers, she has a secret; she and her mom are illegal immigrants, the so-called “paperless”. When her mother is one day discovered by police, her whole life comes crashing down.

Director Frieder Schlaich will be coming to Stockholm along with 13 – year-old actress Mari Angel Böhnke who plays the lead role; there will be interview opportunities during the festival.


Ali has blue eyes by Claudio Giovannesi

The film is about Nader, an Italian boy with Arabic roots. It covers topics such as the difficulty of fitting into society, how it feels to stand in between two cultures and how to distinguish right from wrong


Brooklyn castle by Katie Dellamagiore

In a New York school where most students live below the poverty line, it is neither sport, gangster style or music that provides the coolest students. It’s chess. The school’s chess team has won more national competitions than any other school in the United States. In this documentary, we follow five of the team members, in life outside of school as well as during competitions and challenges for gains and losses.


For information on the programme for the week, click here.

For information on ‘Inspiration Day’, a free workshop for teachers and educators on 16th April, please register by April 8th here.


Take part in an unforgettable movie party with Stockholm International Film Festival Junior 2013 on 20 April!

Where: Cinema Skandia, Drottninggatan 82

When: Saturday, April 20 at 11:30. Doors open for mingling at 11:00

At 12, we will watch the South African film “Zambezia”, a colourful adventure movie with a lot of humour, and also one of the first animated films that are exported far outside their home country. This year’s Bronze Horse will be awarded for ‘Best Film’ and ‘Best Swedish Film’ and perhaps the youngest short film directors conditional on the contest 1 minute film.

We have 10 pairs of tickets to give away for this gala event! All you or your child needs to do is to browse the programme and tell us (in the comments box below) which is the film you most want to watch and why! We will then select 10 winners, based on the reasons.



  • NITYA CHAKHAIYAR 27 Mar 2013

    Hi, I am Nitya, 6yrs old and would like to watch “Ali has blue eye” the most because my family and I have relocated from India to Sweden. It is very challenging for me fit into the society as my traditional and cultural values are different.

    I could speak Hindi and English before we came to Sweden but to make myself a part of the society I learnt to speak swedish.

    Then only I could understand how welcoming and helpful Swedish people are. Though my upbringing is different from swedish kids but i noticed that our moral values are the same, that could only happen because now I can speak and understand swedish.

    • Farrah Gillani 2 Apr 2013

      Nitya, that is a very thought provoking response – thank you so very much. You have two tickets to the gala day held for you 🙂

  • Sandee Melin 27 Mar 2013

    Oh, this is a tough one as it would be a choice between two movies, Vampyrsystra or Zambezia. I was fortunate enough to stay on Lake Kariba, the border between Zimbabwe and Zambia. It was breathtaking! Would love to see how they have portrayed the area in an animation.

    I LOVE vampire movies and my sons love everything about magic and the mystical world, it’s something that we could be able to enjoy together!

    • Farrah Gillani 2 Apr 2013

      Great response – you have a pair of tickets to the gala day and will see Zambezia in all its glory 🙂 Congrats!

      • Sandee Melin 17 Apr 2013

        Super, thanks so much!

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