January 31, 2023

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Paris Rendez-Vous comes back to life with 400 film buyers, 100 TV buyers in attendance

3 min read

Running January 10-17, UniFrance’s Rendez-Vous – an export-focused market that brings together buyers, producers, talent and the film and television press – will celebrate its 25th year in Paris.m A return to pre-pandemic (in-person) attendance numbers, and a once more vibrant social calendar, cocktails, awards ceremonies and evening events that had fallen by the wayside in the past few vintages.

“We will have a new influence,” said Gilles Renouard, UniFrance’s cinema director of this year’s event. “People are finding each other again, [and] Our goal was to return to a normal version with our European distributors.”

Indeed, with 87 films brought to market and more than 400 international film distributors present, such figures mark a high not seen since 2019 – those numbers are bolstered by 100 TV buyers, who are on board in 2021 following the merger with UniFrance TV France International. A one-stop-shop for film and TV promotions.

“Our objective is not to grow every year,” Renouard said. “Instead we want to welcome the right People – professionals and distributors who buy French goods abroad

Forty-one film sales agents and 62 TV outfits (which, due to the nature of the current marketplace, see some overlap between the two) will take part in this year’s event, which will introduce a new stage dedicated to French TV. Taking place on January 10-11, TV Showcase France will spotlight upcoming drama and documentary titles from TV Distribution, StudioCanal, Neuen Connect, among others.

Standout titles from the TV showcase include Federation Studios’ biopic miniseries “Bardot,” “Aspergirl,” a comedy about a neurodivergent single-mother presented by France TV Distribution, and “The Fragile Colossus,” a solo drama starring Eric Cantona.

On the film side, 46 titles will make their market premieres, starting with the world premiere of François Ozon’s 1930s showbiz caper “The Crime is Mine,” which opens Jan. 11 at the Unifrance Rendez-Vous.

Through Auteurs, other market premieres include “Soul Mates,” a recovery drama starring Noémie Merlant (“Portrait of a Lady on Fire”) and Benjamin Voisin (“Lost Illusions”), and directed by André Techiné; Bangkok-set action drama “Farong” from director Xavier Janes (“Gangs of London”); and director Benoît Jacot’s theater documentary “By Heart,” which follows Isabelle Huppert and Fabrice Lucchini during a season at the Avignon Theater Festival.

More commercially, Sales Agent SND will open both “The Book of Wonders,” about a distraught mother who travels the world to help her sick son, and “Princes of the Desert,” a family adventure following a Berber boy. A baby camel on a run across the Sahara.

Despite Laurent Tirard’s non-on-bike farce “Oh My Goodness!” And Philippe Lachew’s sprawling sequel “Alibi.com 2,” this year’s selection is noticeably lighter on comedy than previous years, a Deep Renouard compares to “a market correction,” noting that comedies (alongside family fare) lead international admissions in 2022. , and thus remain a market leader on the global stage.

There are also questions about who is behind the camera. “We’ll have 28 films from female directors,” Renouard added, pointing to titles like Lisa Azuels’ “The Book of Wonders,” Jennifer Devolder’s “The Midwife” and Isabelle Mergault’s “Hands of Gold.” “And those directors focus less on comedies than social movies, dramas and family films.”

Whatever the event and whatever the genre, a spot at the new supercharged event will undoubtedly set the stage for years to come.

“These films will launch their international careers here,” continued Renouard. “A third of the French films released internationally in 2022 will be discovered here. And if you rent the festival and take away a few very commercial titles [like the upcoming ‘The Three Musketeers’]All other films that will form the heart of French cinema abroad will be shown at the Rendez-Vous.”

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