Press release: World premiere of Winding Refn's newly restored PUSHER at the 81st Venice International Film Festival

By TrustNordisk



Venice International Film Festival 2024 has announced its official selection for the Venice Classics section, which includes Nicolas Winding Refn’s newly restored Danish cult classic PUSHER, starring Mads Mikkelsen and Kim Bodnia, among others. The festival takes place between 28 August and 7 September 2024.

5 July 2024, Copenhagen – We are thrilled to share that Venice International Film Festival has just announced its official selection for this year’s festival. The announcement includes the selection of critically acclaimed director Nicolas Winding Refn’s newly restored 1996 cult classic PUSHER, which will compete in the section ‘Venice Classics Competition Restored Films’.

Nicolas Winding Refn’s cult classic PUSHER was not only a breakthrough for Refn but was also widely recognized among international festivals. The film premiered at Toronto Film Festival and garnered significant attention for its resolute realism and compelling storytelling about Copenhagen’s gritty underworld. The feature was further selected for Cannes Critics’ Week, underlining its status as a noteworthy debut from a promising director, followed by London Film Festival.

Managing Director of TrustNordisk, Susan Wendt, comments on the recent selection:
‘28 years after Nicolas Winding Refn's debut hit the world, we are really excited to have the world premiere of the restored Pusher movie in Venice Classics. The perfect way of re-introducing this cult trilogy to the fans.’

The newly restored feature includes a star-studded international cast, consisting of young versions of internationally praised Danish actors Mads Mikkelsen (THE PROMISED LAND; 2023; FANTATIC BEASTS – THE SECRETS OF DUMBLEDORE; ANOTHER ROUND, 2020), Kim Bodnia (A TASTE OF HUNGER, 2021; THE WITCHER 2021-; KILLING EVE 2018-22), Zlatko Buric (THE TRIANGLE OF SADNESS, 2022) and Danish actress Laura Drasbæk.

Besides the film’s impressive reception at the international film festivals, the feature was also sold to a large number of territories world-wide, including North America, Latin America, the UK and Ireland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Benelux, the Baltics, Italy, Spain, South Africa, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Former Yugoslavia, Hungary, Poland, Bulgaria, Russia and Ukraine, Israel, Turkey, Japan, South Korea and Australia.
Nicolas Winding Refn is a visionary and award-winning Danish filmmaker and screenwriter, who made his international breakthrough with PUSHER. The director is known for a large number of festival selected darlings, including the Cannes Palme d'Or-nominated THE NEON DEMON (2016) and ONLY GOD FORGIVES (2013) as well as the Academy Award®-nominated DRIVE (2011) for which he also won the award for 'Best Director' at Cannes International Film Festival. 

His portfolio also includes BRONSON (2009), which was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize in “World Cinema – Dramatic” Sundance Film Festival, as well as his film BLEEDER (1999) which was selected for Venice Film Festival.
Nicolas Winding Refn’s film PUSHER, along with the rest of the trilogy, has undergone a careful restoration, enabling the entire trilogy to be released in the highest quality for both new and longtime fans.
Frank, a small-time drug dealer, faces the worst week of his life when a heroin deal turns sour, leaving him indebted to Balkan drug baron, Milo. As the week progresses, Frank struggles to repay the money amidst mounting pressure from the merciless drug lord. His rising desperation spirals out of control when nothing goes as planned, forcing Frank to confront the dire consequences of his own self-inflicted plight.
PUSHER is directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, written by Nicolas Winding Refn and Jens Dahl, produced by Henrik Danstrup for Bilbao Enterprise Aps with support from the Danish Film Institute. Restoration done by Nordisk Film Shortcut. Supervised and approved by director Nicolas Winding Refn and photographer Morten Søborg. Local distribution by Nordisk Film Distribution. International sales handled by TrustNordisk.
Italian distribution handled by Movies Inspired.
To learn more about the film, please visit our website.