Asian Media fest boasts growth

Seller, buyer participation increase from last year

SINGAPORE — The anchor events of the Asian Media Festival, held Nov. 28-Dec. 1 at Shangri-La Hotel Singapore, have shown steady growth on last year, according to organizers.

With seller and buyer participation from 49 countries, the Asia TV Forum, Film Market & Conference has seen 25% growth year on year, said Ed Ng, prexy, Reed Exhibitions Singapore-Malaysia. Sales companies are up 25% to 250 this year, with the number of Asian companies up 44% to 121 in 2006.

In all, $250 million in film funding was up for negotiation at the Media Financing Forum, with 34 shortlisted from a total of 38 projects submitted — a 40% increase in submissions on 2005.

Transactions this year are expected to exceed $33 million, and all five majors are in attendance again this year.

Australia, France, Singapore, South Korea and Spain have national pavilions at the market, and Mosfilm Cinema Concern, Kazakh Cinema Distribution and Ruscico (Russian Cinema Council) are participating for the first time.

Singapore signed three Memoranda of Understanding with Canada’s National Film Board, Finanziaria Laziale di Sviluppo (FILAS) of Italy and the Software Industry Promotion Agency of Thailand to advance media collaborations.

Singapore has co-production agreements with Canada, Japan and New Zealand, as well as MOUs on media cooperation with the Korean Broadcasting Institute, the Korean Broadcasting Commission and with the Brunei government.

And “Taoshu — The Warrior Boy,” a Singapore joint production between Peach Blossom Media and Media Development Authority is to get a Chinese spinoff, “Taoshu & Friends,” an animated and live-action mixed media adventure series for 5-to-8-year-olds.

Each episode of the new show features 10 minutes of animated adventures and live-action sequences in which real children share their understanding of Chinese festivals, food and culture.

Having enjoyed success in France, Israel and Hong Kong, Peach Blossom Media’s director, Sung Lingun, sees demand for the series in the regional markets.

“That is the reason why I have decided to bring ‘Taoshu’ back to its roots and create a brand-new mixed media series in its native language — Mandarin,” he said.

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