No, I didn’t win anything and no, I didn’t release anything. But it’s been a good week for anyone interested in Danish comics, as Tuesday was the revival of the once-prestigious Ping Award and Thursday saw the much-awaited release of Thomas Thorhauge’s collection of film portraits Det Sidste Ord (The Last Word).
The award show in Vega Tuesday night was loaded with Danish celebrities as presenters; Talkshow host Anders Lund Madsen, actor Nicolas Bro, movie reviewer Christian Mongaard and TV hostess Ane Cortzen. Between awards was a well-staged comics battle were even yours truly took the stage (and drew this).
The awards themselves took a fresh look at what’s going on in DK including webcomics. I’m sure the political choice of rewarding the more artsy creators served it’s purpose; to expand the public awareness of what comics can be. There were also a couple of international awards, featuring Skype thank you speeches from Jaime Hernandez, Shaun Tan and Craig Thompson who won for his book Habibi (interview with Thompson here). The 2012 Ping Awards was without a doubt the coolest comics event ever set on Danish ground. Several high profile cartoonist had to be turned down at the door when the show sold out. Be sure to get your ticket early next year when I shall be nominated and shall win EVERYTHING! Or maybe not.
Last night was another chance to celebrate Danish comics, as Thomas Thorhauge released his series of movie star portraits; satirical strips derived from real interviews/quotes from people like George Lucas (above), Clint Eastwood, Jack Nicholson, Marilyn Monroe, Woody Allen and our very own Lars von Trier and his producer through twenty-some years; Peter Aalbæk Jensen.
Ålbæk and the creator had an on stage talk about movie myths and true stories from Aalbæk’s long career as head of the Danish movie company Zentropa. Fun stories of Björk and Trier’s clashes during the filming of Dancer in the Dark, and the story of when Catherine Deneuve rushed to the aid of a toppled garden gnome during lunch at Zentropa, and hundreds of crew members looked on in horror as the diva gently stood the gnome back up. What Deneuve didn’t know was that the aforementioned gnome was frequently used as an outdoor urinal!
Peter Albæk Jensen is quite a character and a great storyteller, and is also featured in Thorhauge’s book. Unfortunately Det Sidste Ord is only available in Danish so far, but the caricatures themselves are worth a look.
And to top off the week, Bill Sienkeiwicz is signing in Faraos Cigarer in about half an hour.
Be sure to come back next week for more movie madness in the series Film School Confidential.