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Russians expand Cannes presence

Pavilion set to be twice as large as last year's

The Russians are returning to Cannes big time, with a market pavilion twice the size of last year’s stand.

A full sked of screenings, workshops, co-production pitching sessions and directing master classes is planned for the 1,614 sq. ft. pavilion in a beachside location close to the market and international village pavilions.

Russian sellers are bringing titles to Cannes including “Hipsters,” “Traas Bulba,” “By the Will of Genghis Khan, “Morphia” and “Hitler Goes Kaput.”

Highlights include a roundtable discussion on the business prospects for Western producers of independent cinema in the Russian market during a time of financial crisis, scheduled for May 15, and a discussion on co-production opportunities for Russian and international filmmakers that will include representatives from key government funding agencies and leading Russian producers May 18.

The pavilion, organized by the Russian ministry of culture, promotion body Sovexport Film and nonprofit group Russian Film Network, is sponsored by companies that include Russian World Studios and Access Industries.

In other Cannes market news, the Croatian Audiovisual Center is taking a pavilion for the second time, and will be marking its full membership of the European Film Promotion network, which it joined in January.

Croatian producer Ankica Juric Tilic, a graduate of the EAVE (European Audio Visual Entrepreneurs) producers training program, has been chosen to take part in the EFP’s Producers on the Move scheme.

Croatian director Dalibor Matanic’s short film “Party” is in official selection at Cannes in Critics’ Week. It’s the second in a series of six shorts dealing with the intimate lives of six young girls from different parts of the world on the same day.

The first film in the series, “The Drought,” was screened at Cannes in the Directors’ Fortnight program in 2003.

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