Film Director Sólveig Anspach Passes Away Skip to content

Film Director Sólveig Anspach Passes Away

Icelandic film director Sólveig Anspach passed away on August 7 at the age of 54, according to

The cause of death was cancer. Born in the Westman Islands on December 8, 1960, she was the daughter of Högna Sigurðardóttir and Gerard Anspach. She grew up in New York and later in Paris where she studied philosophy and clinical psychology. She graduated from the FEMIS film school in Paris in 1990.

According to Le Monde, her father did not encourage her to study film, but she listened to her mother who told her, “Girls can do anything, but they must be more tenacious than men.”

At the start of her career, she focused on documentaries, but gradually turned toward feature films. Her films include the award-winning Haut les cœurs, based partly on her own experience with cancer; Lulu femme nue; and Stormy Weather, chosen to compete at the Cannes Film Festival in 2003.

The shooting of her latest film, Sundáhrifin (L’éffet aquatique), took place in Iceland in June. It was the third in a trilogy including Skrapp út (2006) and Queen of Montreuil (2011).

Sólveig was considered by colleagues to be a brilliant and prolific filmmaker. In an interview with Le Monde in 2014, she was asked what made her so prolific. Her response: “ What presses me so? It’s knowing, like everyone else, that life can be over tomorrow. It’s just that I, perhaps, think about it more often than others.”

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