2022-04-14 11:54Press release

Three Swedish directors in competition for a Palme d’Or!

Boy from Heaven by Tarik Saleh (above) and Triangle of Sadness by Ruben Östlund (below). Boy from Heaven by Tarik Saleh (above) and Triangle of Sadness by Ruben Östlund (below).

As announced today by the Cannes Film Festival today, no less than three Swedish directors will compete for the Palme d’Or at this year’s festival; Tarik Saleh with Boy from Heaven, Ruben Östlund with Triangle of Sadness and Ali Abbasi with Danish film Holy Spider. Abbasi’s film is co-produced with Sweden, among other countries.

Boy from heaven by Tarik Saleh
Adam, the son of a fisherman, is granted a scholarship at the prestigious Al-Azhar University in Cairo. When Sheikh Al-Azhar, the highest authority in sunni Islam suddenly dies, a power struggle starts; who will become the next Grand Imam? At State Security, investigator Ibrahim has been ordered to make sure it will be the one the president wants. When his informant inside Al-Azhar gets brutally murdered, Ibrahim needs a replacement, someone without connections or contacts. Adam fits the part perfect.

Main character Adam is played by Tawfeek Barhon and as Ibrahim we see Fares Fares. The rest of the cast includes Mohammad Bakri, Makram J. Khoury and Mehdi Dehbi.

Produced by Atmo/Kristina Åberg and Fredrik Zander, in coproduction with, among others, Film i Väst, SVT, Haymaker, Mikael Ahlström Films, Bufo (Finland), Memento Production (France) ARTE France Cinéma, Final Cut For Real (Denmark), with support from Swedish Film Institute/Madeleine Ekman and Hanna Lejonqvist, Eurimages, Canal+, Centre National du cinéma et de l'image animée, Finnish Film Foundation, Business Finland and Danish Film Institute.

Triangle of Sadness by Ruben Östlund
Triangle of Sadness starts out in the fashion universe. In the company of two models, Carl and Yaya, we find ourselves on an exclusive yacht cruise, surrounded by the crème de la crème of society and a Marxist sea captain. When the yacht is caught in a storm and sinks, a handful of the passengers are washed ashore on a deserted island. Tables are turned in the ensuing struggle for survival, and a middle-aged Filipino cleaning lady comes out on top.

 The cast also includes, among others, Zlatko Buric, Vicki Berlin and Henrik Dorsin.

Produced by Plattform Produktion in coproduction with Film i Väst, Essential Films, Coproduction Office, SVT, BBC Films, Arte France Cinéma och ZDF/Arte, TRT, Eurimages, BFI, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, Det Danske Filminstitut, Hamburg Film Fund and Nordisk Film & TV Fond. Executive produced by Imperative Entertainment and 30West. Associated producers are Heretic, Bord Cadre & Sovereign Films and Piano Films. Danish coproducer is Per Damgaard Hansen for Coproduction Office APS. With support from Swedish Film Institute/Anders Nylander

International Sales: Coproduction Ofc.


Holy Spider by Ali Abbasi
A journalist descends into the dark underbelly of the Iranian holy city of Mashhad as she investigates the serial killings of sex workers by the so called "Spider Killer", who believes he is cleansing the streets of sinners.

Produced by Profile Pictures, One Two Films, A co-production with Nordisk Film Production AB, Wild Bunch International, Film i Väst, Why Not Productions, ZDF/ARTE, ARTE France Cinéma . In cooperation with DR – Danish Broadcasting Corporation and SVT, In association with The Imaginarium Films, Rotor Film. Supported by The Danish Film Institute, Eurimages, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, FFA Filmförderungsanstalt, DFFF, Nordisk Film & TV Fond, MOIN Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein. With support from Swedish Film Institute/Madeleine Ekman

About The Swedish Film Institute

The Swedish Film Institute is a collective voice for film in Sweden, and a meeting-place for experiences and insights that elevate film on all levels. We preserve and make available Sweden’s film heritage, work to educate children and young people in film and moving images, support the production, distribution and screening of valuable film, and represent Swedish film internationally. A broad diversity of narratives establishes discussions and insights that strengthen the individual and our democracy. Together, we enable more people to create, experience and be enriched by film.


Jan Göransson
Head of Press
Jan Göransson
Per Perstrand
Communications Officer – Press
Per Perstrand