Neumann attends Cannes conference

Germany promotes new fund

CANNES — Teuton culture minister Bernd Neumann flew into Cannes Tuesday to attend the German Federal Film Fund’s confab aimed at attracting international co-productions in the country.

The fund, launched in January, offers $80 million a year for three years. Applying producers must be Teuton residents and spend their money in the country.

Prospective international co-producers must contribute at least 20% of the film’s production budget and partner up with a German shingle. The fund provides up to 20% of the budget for films that already have 75% of their budget in place and shoot in Germany.

Fund execs can top $5.5 million ceiling on grant to a single production on a case-by-case basis if German spend amounts to at least 35% of film’s total production budget. Highest single amount given out so far by the fund is $12 million grant awarded to the Wachowski brothers’ “Speed Racer,” their first directorial effort since “The Matrix” series.

“We want to attract more international co-productions to come to Germany,” said project manager Christine Berg. “We need to support German producers and give them the ability to say they have guaranteed money if international projects are co-produced with them.”

Berlin already has “Speed Racer,” Bryan Singer’s “Stauffenberg,” Jan de Bont’s “Stopping Power” and Tom Twyker’s “The International” set to start lensing there in the months ahead.

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