Euro promo body gets thumbs up

EU's Media agrees EFP funding plan

BERLIN — The European Union’s Media Program has approved continued financing for the European Film Promotion org through 2008, including backing for its activities outside Europe.

In addition to providing Euros 550,000 ($815,000) for EFP’s promotional events and activities throughout Europe, it has also granted $924,252 for operations outside Europe, including film sales support.

The financial support covers up to 50% of EFP’s expenses. Promotional events are co-financed by EFP’s 27 member organizations as well as by public funds and private sponsors.

In addition to EFP’s 11 major events in 2008, the funds will also back the org’s Film Sales Support program established in 2004. The FSS helps European sales agents market their films at seven selected international film festivals, including Sundance, Cine de Mar del Plata in Argentina, Mexico’s Cine en Guadalajara, Shanghai, Toronto, Rio de Janeiro and Pusan.

The FSS offers maximum grants of $7,400 per film per festival to cover 50% of the costs for promotional activities undertaken at fests by sales reps.

In Europe, EFP’s events include the Shooting Stars competition in Berlin; the Picture Europe! The Best of European Cinema showcase in Madrid, Berlin and London; Producers on the Move in Cannes; the Variety Critics’ Choice: Europe Now! in Karlovy Vary; and the Spotlight on Distributors in San Sebastian.

“The Media Program has been our natural ally and supporter of our activities since the beginning,” said EFP prexy Claudia Landsberger.

“Without its support, EFP would never have been able to help European films and producers cross so many borders.”

The Media Program has supported EFP since its creation in 1997.

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