Films receive Hubert Bals funding
BRUSSELS — Europe’s leading film event for edgy fare, the International Film Festival Rotterdam, revealed its first titles Thursday.“If the Seed Doesn’t Die,” by Serbian-Romanian helmer Sinisa Dragin, will take its world bow at the fest, which runs Jan. 21-Feb. 1. The pic explores religious issues in the Balkans, when two fathers looking for lost children meet on the Danube river. Dragin took one of Rotterdam’s Tiger Awards in 2002 for “Everyday God Kisses Us on the Mouth.” Also slated for the next edition is “Gabbla” (Inland), sophomore feature from Algerian helmer Tariq Teguia, and “Now Showing” by Raya Martin of the Philippines. All three helmers received coin this week from the fest’s Hubert Bals Fund. Martin gets aid for his digital project “How to Disappear Completely,” a docu-style pic following a group of actors trying to survive in the jungle. It shoots in parallel with his feature “Independencia.” Teguia receives funds to complete a 35mm version of “Gabbla,” which took the Fipresci prize at Venice. Other pics expected to screen at Rotterdam include Haile Gerima’s “Teza,” Yesim Ustaoglu’s “Pandora’s Box,” Emily Tang’s “Perfect Life,” Matheus Nachtergaele’s “The Dead Girl’s Feast” and Yang Jin’s “Er Dong.” All pics received Hubert Bals coin in past funding rounds. Among the 25 projects sharing Euros 362,500 ($464,100) in this year’s Hubert Bals funding round are scripts from Pablo Larrain (“Post Mortem”), Rodrigo Moreno (“Reimon”) and Apichatpong Weerasethakul (“Primitive — Uncle Boonmee”). The fund is also supporting two independent film distribution initiatives in Latin America. Efecto Cine will organize 80 screenings in about 40 cities in Uruguay from January to April. The Network of Micro Cinemas for Peru will set up cinema groups to screen indie films throughout the country. Finally, a Hubert Bals Fund Award of $6,400 will go to the best project presented at the Film Bazaar running Nov. 26-29 at the International Film Festival of India in Goa.