Stobe Harju - Imaginaerum by Nightwish

Imaginaerum is not only a Nightwish album or a movie. Watching it, you’ll need to understand what is important. Sometimes you forget the most important things in life, because on the outside, they seem small or meaningless. Still we need them in order to get through the day. Without them, there is no life. Hopefully, when the viewer walks out of the theatre, having become part of the great adventure, he or she is able to appreciate those small things again.

Although Imaginaerum is an international production and its message is universal, the story is very Finnish at heart. Although it seemingly centers around a conflict between an old man and his daughter, it also addresses bigger themes. When we become older, what is the thing that can lead us out of this reality? What or who personifies that escape? What are the things, possibly forgotten in everyday life, that we remember at the time of loss?

This was the starting point and the dream that two people started working on over four and a half years ago. Our goal was to present the viewer and listener with an experience where the realm of imagination — of a child or an adult — is a gateway to a fantasy adventure. Imaginaerum is a place where music blasts out loud, each moment of action has epic proportions and grown-ups become children again — even if just for a moment. It’s a magic trick that can not be explained.

There have been many people working on the project with an enormously big heart: actors, fx artists, producers, sound designers, musicians, builders, designers, etc. The list is endless. They often worked around the clock, not because of fame and glory but because most of them also had a very personal relationship with the project. While working with it, they were also realizing their own dream, and these people wanted to see the movie portray their original vision. I have an endless amount of gratitude for them.

Imaginaerum is not necessarily a musical film, although it is strongly based on the latest album by Nightwish. Each song on the album is featured in the movie, too, in the same order, even. Among other things, a lot of people will be surprised by the small greatness of the end product. It is hard to illustrate the music of Nightwish unless you have tens of millions of dollars in your pocket. For that reason, too, the result can be seen as a miracle, whatever anyone might say.

I’m writing this in Montreal as the last day of the production nears. For four years, we have toiled to realize a dream, a dream that culminates tomorrow. I hope everybody will be able to join us in Imaginaerum in November.

Stobe Harju