October 25, 2021


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At the Zurich Summit, producers debated the state of European production

3 min read

European producers exchanged notes at the Zurich Summit on the challenges of financing, the talent crisis, the barriers to distribution and the retention of rights.

Speaking at the “Creative Financing and Production in Europe” session, Georgos Cornavas, co-founder of Greece’s “Triangle of Sadness” producer Heritic, spoke of the challenge of finding crews that were booked into much larger budget projects for streamers.

Greece has seen an influx of foreign shoots, such as “Knives Out 2”, products attracted by its generous 40% tax credit and because Covid-1 rates were relatively low at the beginning of the epidemic, it allowed international production to open faster.

Gaddy Hamelvol, chief executive of “Nothing to Laugh About” and “Occupied” producer Hamelfilm, fears that many European producers are unable to hold IP considering the streamers’ choice to buy the film, and “may eventually become a service producer.”

Hummelvol is a member of the European Producers Club, which in May issued a code of conduct for streamers when it comes to commissioning content from indie producers.

The EPC code contains four basic principles that cover important bones of debate such as the right of European indie producers to hold IP; To access streamer viewing data; And will become the exclusive channel through which US streamers can access European soft money.

He echoed these calls at the summit, calling for more transparency about the data: “I think we have to fight to keep the IP and maintain the diversity of the content we create.”

Cornavas said that producing European films in terms of competition was “always difficult and it will be difficult”. “There are a lot of projects here … so you need to have a good project.” He also spoke of the importance of “creating organic co-productions” rather than just “going to places to ask for money and trying to sit there.”

He added that, in some ways, the European system for film financing is “quite healthy”, citing competition from many countries to attract production with liberal tax breaks. Combined with state funding, pre-sales and public TV funding, “you have the tools to do it.”

Hummelvol noted that tax incentives are welcome, but that – at a time when the environment is high on the agenda – “it always feels like bad running production … we should try to find ways to work on green production at a time when cooperation is needed.”

There was also controversy over whether James Bond’s “No Time to Die” would resurrect the movie among the audience, and whether the stock of the next Covid-1 post-movie would be shelved and awaited release. Audience.

“I’m not very optimistic,” said Dan Wechsler, founder of Switzerland’s Board Cadre Films. “Our Earthhouse distributors are having a hard time. The whole chain is suffering, I can see that some theaters are going to close. We need some strong films to give people confidence to come back. He mentioned that 15 years ago there were 15 Earthhouse movies in Geneva, but now there are only three.

Wechsler also spoke about the importance of film festivals after the Covid-1 post, which played an important role as a platform for Earthhouse films.

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