Each year, l’Atelier de la Cinéfondation selects fifteen projects for feature films from around the world, to put them into contact with potential partners: coproducers, distributors or international sales agents. Here are comments from the directors and producers of three of them.
For Denise Gamze Ergüven, a young Turkish director who graduated from Femis in 2006, being selected in the Atelier is “providential”. Her project, Kings, is an unusual fiction that takes place during the Los Angeles riots of 1992. Produced by Gilles Sandoz (Maia Films), Kings needed this kind of encounter with the market. “Making a film in the United States in English is like going to the moon. The French production modes all rub people the wrong way, and so you have to invent a new style of production. Being here is very helpful to explore a number of leads.”
Often, the leads are actually created in Cannes. La ligne jaune, for example, a production between Mexico and France, has proven to be very attractive to the Germans - a surprise for French coproducer Thierry Lenouvel (Ciné Sud). This two-way coproduction could also become three-way with Columbia, as Thierry Lenouvel introduced the Mexican producer to a Colombian producer, with whom he had previously coproduced La Société du feu rouge by Ruben Mendoza. “A European producer who brings together two Latin American producers, now there is a good example of globalisation”
For the project Luton, 50 to 60% of the budget had to be found abroad. With the Greek economic crisis, public funding has been frozen for 18 months. They are mainly looking for financing in Germany, Sweden and Austria, where the language barriers are not as rigid as in France. They have had 40 meetings and feel as though their interlocutors have shown “a good understanding of the project.”
For this seventh edition of the Atelier, the 15 projects have given rise to 332 meetings with 90 companies. We emphasise that 100% of the projects in 2008 and 2009 came to fruition.
B. de M.