Body hands out $627,000

The Rotterdam Film Festival’s Hubert Bals Fund has awarded E435,000 ($627,000) to 28 projects from 18 countries.

The pics vary in origin and stage of production. Eight projects in post-production have been granted coin, two of which — Chinese helmer Weng Shou Ming’s “Fujian Blue” and Thai helmer Aditya Assarat’s “Wonderful Town” — have already been selected for the 38th Rotterdam Film Festival, which unspools Jan. 23- Feb. 3.

Other projects include Lebanese doc “I Want to See,” by husband-and-wife team Khalil Joreige and Joana Hadjithomas, which follows Catherine Deneuve on a visit to Lebanese artist Rabih Mroue’s destroyed hometown on the Lebanese-Israeli border; South African helmer Darryl James Roodt’s “Zimbabwe”; and the debut features from Chile’s Jose Torres Leiva and Brazil’s Matheus Nachtergaele.

The Hubert Bals Fund, set up to support filmmakers from developing countries, has an annual budget of close to $1.7 million, which is divided into maximum individual grants of $14,000 for script and project development, $28,000 for digital production, $43,000 for post-production or $21,000 towards a project’s distribution costs in its country of origin.

Selection rounds take place twice a year. The fund is supported by the Dutch ministry of foreign affairs, Dutch non-governmental development agencies Hivos and NCDO, the DOES Foundation and Dutch pubcaster NPS.

HUBERT BALS FUND FALL 2007 SELECTION ROUND:

POST PRODUCTION
“I Want to See” —Khalil Joreige, Joanna Hadjithomas (Lebanon)
“El cielo, la tierra, y la lluvia” (The Sky, the Earth and the Rain — Jose Luis Torres Leiva (Chile)
“A festa da menina morta” (The Dead Girl’s Party) — Matheus Nachtergaele (Brazil)
“Fujian Blue” — Weng Shou Ming (China)
“Liverpool” — Lisandro Alonso (Argentina)
“Sweet Sixties” — Sergei Loznitsa (Ukraine)
“Wonderful Town” — Aditya Assarat (Thailand)
“Zimbabwe” — Darrel James Roodt (South Africa)

SCRIPT DEVELOPMENT
“Le coq” (The Rooster) — Mitra Farahani (Iran)
“Mute Affairs” — Bui Thac Chuyen (Vietnam)
“Feast of Villains” — Pan Jian Lin (China)
“Friccion” (Friction) — Michel Lipkes (Mexico)
“Gabbla” (Inland) — Tariq Teguia (Algeria)
“Black and White Photos” — Haolun Shu (China)
“Independencia” (Independence) — Raya Martin (Philippines)
Untitled Bahman Ghobadi Project — Bahman Ghobadi (Iran)
“Ocaso” (Decline) — Theo Jose Court (Chile)
“Stroke” — Daniela Schneider (Mexico)
“Susa” — Giorgi Chalauri (Georgia)
“Tatuagem” (Tattoo) — Hilton Lacerda (Brazil)
“The Umesh Chronicles” — Pooja Kaul (India)
“Zephyr” — Belma Bas (Turkey)

DIGITAL PRODUCTION
“Los Herederos” (The Inheritors) — Eugenio Polgovsky (Mexico)
“A Journal of Crude Oil” — Wang Bing (China)
“Oxhide II” — Liu Jiayin (China)
“Un suspiro” (A Sigh) — Paz Encina (Paraguay)

DISTRIBUTION
“La Libertad, los muertos & fantasma” — Lisandro Alonso — release by Mantarraya Producciones in Mexico City (Mexico)

WORKSHOPS
JiFFest workshop, December 2007, Jakarta (Indonesia)

SCRIPT AWARDS
HBF Award at JiFFest 2007, Jakarta (Indonesia)

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