Just home from filming in Utah, and ahead of her visit to the Galway Film Fleadh, we caught up with Birna Pétursdóttir, co-founder of the creative media production company Fluga Hugmyndahus to learn more about this young Icelandic company, its work and ambitions.
Birna graduated from the Rose Bruford College in London in 2012 where she studied classical acting. She also spent time working as a journalist, producer and editor at the regional television station N4. This is where Birna met Árni Theodorsson, her business and life partner. They set up Fluga Hugmyndahus last year.
Birna will be among the speakers at a half-day creative exchange ‘Screen Industries on the Periphery’ being held in NUI Galway, Ireland on July 12th. Find out more and book a place at this free event here
Fluga Hugmyndahus provides the avenue through which Birna and Árni can fulfill their creative ambitions. According to Birna: “We want to tell stores…Our background is in music and theatre and that has always been what we wanted to do. We just never really found a medium that we can do it through, until now”. Árni has a background in editing and filming. The pair complement each other well and form a strong team with a passion for telling stories. They focus on both new subject matter that people can relate to, as well as finding new angles and a fresh perspective on more commonly explored subjects.
The business has developed at a fast pace. They’ve produced commercials and TV documentaries. The company has worked with local businesses to produce digital advertising material, such as a local restaurant and whale watching company. Alongside this, they continue to develop new ideas to work on next. One project created by Fluga Hugmyndahus is a three part documentary series about the 400 pioneers who left Iceland in the 1850s seeking a better life in Utah. Birna is also studying for a Master’s degree in Ethnology. She gained inspiration for the documentary when on a trip to the Westman Islands where she saw an exhibition about these pioneers. Birna and Árni have also recently finished a documentary about the 100 year old Akyureyri Theatre Company.
Regional film and TV
The film and TV industry in Iceland is concentrated around the capital Reykjavik. Fluga Hugmyndahus is based in Akureyri, North East Iceland. The industry is less well developed here and the company has begun to fill a void, telling stories about regional Iceland from within the community. Birna explains: “Being an insider and telling the story of people inside rather than an outsider coming to look inside, and then leaving again, that’s valuable”. Birna also observes that it’s a good time to get involved in independent production in Iceland. Commissioners are looking to hire young talent with fresh ideas to produce content.
Creative inspiration flows strongly as the company currently has more ideas than time to develop them. The future looks bright for Fluga Hugmyndahus.