EU films to get festival cash boost

Brussels earmarks $858,000 for project

BRUSSELS — The EU is to provide nearly $1 million in cash to help promote European films abroad, under a new plan unveiled by subsidy org the MEDIA program.

Brussels has issued a call for companies to submit proposals for the project, which will have a budget of $858,000. The successful applicant for the contract will be required to promote European prods at film festivals in countries not covered by the MEDIA program, which now has 25 members after Slovenia joined at the end of last month. The winning bidder will also support European filmmakers attending these events and facilitate local distribution and screenings of European films after they have been presented at festivals.

Subsidies will add up to a maximum of $21,400 per festival for medium-size festivals (where less than 50 films are shown) and $42,800 per festival for larger fests (where over 50 films are screened).

The deadline for proposals to be submitted is May 12, 2004. Backed by a four-year budget of $428 million up to 2005, the MEDIA program co-finances training, productions, distribution and promotion for the European TV and film industry.

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