Cinema arrived in Denmark a little over a century ago, and soon people were diligently filming events big and small across the country.
Now, the Danish Film Institute (DFI) is offering a glimpse into the treasure chest of vibrant cultural history stored in its Film Archive through the interactive streaming site "Danmark på film" (Denmark on Film), officially launched on Thursday 29 October at an event held at the Cinematheque in Copenhagen. Watch trailer for the site below
"Danmark på film" is an independent web portal on the DFI's short and documentary streaming site Filmcentralen.
Facts about the films
280 titles (hereof 50 with sound)
500 clips distributed on map
55 hours of digitised film
Oldest film: 1905
Newest film: 1966
Shortest film: 1 min.
Longest film: 150 min.
Examples of titles to explore
400 Flyvemaskiner over Kastrup
400 Aeroplanes overflying Kastrup
Thunfiskeri paa Sjællands Odde
Fishing Tuna at Sjællands Odde
Med Sporvogn gennem Aarhus' Gader
Going by Streetcar through Aarhus
Brand paa D'Angleterre
Hotel D'Angleterre on Fire
Lillebæltsbroens Indvielse 14. Maj
Opening of The Little Belt Bridge, May 14
Skagens 500 Aars Jubilæum
Skagen's 500 Years Anniversary
The Crash of a Zeppelin
Else Kragh og Lilli Andersens Storebælt-svømning
Else Kragh and Lilli Andersen swimming across Storebælt
Press site (in Danish)
Download press photos and trailers
Apart from making films available online, the DFI is inviting its users to help write history. "Danmark på film" features an interactive map of Denmark that makes it easy to find film clips from specific towns or regions. Users can contribute their own stories and historical knowledge, make clips from the films and share them with others.
Danish Film Institute CEO Henrik Bo Nielsen says about the new site:
"Films on social media and YouTube are a goldmine of knowledge about contemporary life that our descendants will look at with wonder and nostalgia. But Danes were filming things big and small long before the Internet. The Film Archive holds a wealth of documentary footage, a selection of which has now been made freely available. It is our ambition to digitise a lot more historical footage in the future. At 'Danmark på film' we invite the public to experience, share and tell Danish history together with us."
Explore at danmarkpaafilm.dk
From "The Human Cannonball in Tivoli" (1943).
More about Danmark på film
From human cannonball to Zeppelin crash
"Danmark på film" presents 55 hours of newly digitised documentary film footage from the period of 1905-1965. The films depict everyday life and special events all across Denmark – including sporting events, town anniversary celebrations, the royal family on summer holidays, openings of bridges and buildings, the passing of the seasons in nature, dramatic events like fires and accidents, and much more. The films are selected from the Film Archive's stores of historical, documentary footage.
Make clips and contribute more knowledge
At "Danmark på film" you can make your own clips from the films you find most interesting. You are free to share, send or embed the clips on your own website, Facebook page, blog, etc. It is also possible to place the clip you made on the map (geotagging). That way, the site’s users can help fill in the empty areas of the map.
Some films show places, people and events that have not been identified. The DFI encourages the website's users to share their knowledge and write comments on the films to enrich the portal with information. The aim is for the portal’s users and the DFI together to create a collective and common historical narrative about Denmark.
Freely available films
"Danmark på film" is publicly available and free. No login or subscription is required. All you need is an Internet connection. "Danmark på film" works on computers, tablets and smartphones. The website is not available in English, but it is accessible from IP addresses outside Denmark.
The films on the site are copyright free, i.e., they can be freely used in non-commercial contexts. You are welcome to use the films and select clips from them, e.g., for your website, exhibition or more via the embed function.
Watch trailer for Danmark på film