Student story - Hanna Lajunen
Home country: Finland
What are you currently doing: Distribution Director at Cinemanse Oy
How did you find out about TAMK and what made you choose it for your studies?
I've always loved cinema. My parents had a movie theatre when I was a small kid so I got mesmerized by amazing films very early on. A great film is something that stays with you for life – as well as the experience of being charmed by it with other movie fanatics.
I found out about TAMK's degree programme while Googling for Screenwriting studies and it seemed like the perfect solution for me in terms of content, schedule, location and the study module with the University of Salford.
What did you like most about Tampere?
Tampere is my hometown and always holds a special place in my heart. It certainly is one of my favourite places in the whole world.
In what ways have your studies contributed to your professional and personal life?
This was my second Master's degree and I felt like I really found a field that interested me beyond words. I also got to know amazing people through this study programme and made friends for life.
Professionally speaking, it has helped me tremendously in my current job at Cinemanse (a film import and distribution company which I founded in 2013): pre-buying films based on a script plays a vital role in film acquisitions.
Cinemanse wants to boost Finnish cinephilia, especially among the young audiences in order to help build the future arthouse-loving generations.
We want to maintain the high level of quality in European international films and look for cinematic gems in all corners of the world, in other words: keep believing in great stories. Constantly developing new and interesting angles of distribution is something I personally aim at, for example enhancing the sense of the Cine community and highlight the experiential part of movie-going - the movie magic that only cinema theatres can offer. The gambling part of this business is a driving force for me. When it comes to promoting films I'm crazy about, I love the challenge as much as I ever did.
The importance of the script analysis toolbox that this study programme gave me can't be stressed enough, but obviously, even more valuable to me are the screenwriting methods and skills I've learnt. At TAMK I finally understood what screenwriting is really about.
How has TAMK supported your needs as a student?
TAMK was wonderful in every way.
What would you say to anyone considering studying at TAMK?
Go for it, it will pay off!
To show a film you absolutely love to other people is the best and by far the most rewarding part of the job. To keep the art of cinema alive and to help the arthouse venues stay alive (and better, to see the number of them raise) feels vital for me.
Great films make life so much better, boost our understanding towards one another and communicate way much more of our cultural heritage than we even seem to grasp. Plus, a little escapism every now and then is good for everyone. When it comes to film and everything beyond, never forget to remain adventurous at heart!
This story was written in March 2017.