Icelandic fishing town casts sparkly net for Eurovision fame

FILE PHOTO: Participant Hatari of Iceland performs during the Grand Final of the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv, Israel

(Reuters) – Icelandic town of Husavik is seeking to harness the publicity gained from Netlix’ Eurovision movie with a new museum that will showcase costumes and a replica of an Elf house featured in the 2020 Will Ferrell comedy.

The town of 2,300 gained attention last year with the release of “Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga” with Ferrell and Rachel McAdams cast as a fictional duo from bumbling through the contest.

The Eurovision Song Contest is one of the world’s biggest annual television events, featuring colourful and often over-the-top performances and outfits. This year’s edition will be held between May 18 and May 22 in Rotterdam.

Husavik, which relies on fishing and whale watching tourism for most of its income, has secured government funding of around 2 million Icelandic crowns ($15,840.33) to open a temporary museum in a building that earlier housed an Exploration Museum.

The man behind the project, entrepreneur Orly Orlyson, told Reuters the museum would be dedicated to the Netflix film, the Eurovision contest, and the Icelandic national final.

Orlyson, 37, a Husavik native and a lifelong fan of Eurovision, said he wanted to explore how local community could use the film to revitalise the town.

He said Eurovision fans would get to see memorable dresses worn in the climactic scenes of the film and other movie props as well as costumes worn by Icelandic contestants.

The museum is also in talks with other Eurovision contestants, including two winners, about lending their memorabilia, he added.

The museum, which aims to open during the Eurovision week in May, is set to operate for two years, with founders exploring a possibility to keep a smaller permanent exhibition afterwards.

($1 = 126.2600 Icelandic Crowns)

(Reporting by Tommy Lund and Jagoda Darlak; Editing by Milla Nissi and Tomasz Janowski)

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