The European Film Promotion office in Hamburg, charged with raising the international profile of the Continent’s pics, has built up over its first 10 years from an initial staff of two, a shoestring budget and 10 member orgs to 12 staffers, a €2 million ($2.7 million) war chest and 27 member orgs.
Renate Rose has been EFP managing director since its launch in 1997. She was the head of promotion at the European Film Distribution Office from 1988 to 1997. Rose studied film and has had a long fascination with European films, especially those that offer a window into the smaller countries. She works with EFP president and founding member Claudia Landsberger, a lawyer and managing director of Holland Film who has had a long career in the film and media industry: production, development, acquisition, marketing and promotion.
Other current EFP board members elected to two-years terms are veepee Christian Dorsch (German Films), Pilar Torre (ICAA deputy director, general promotion of Spain), Francine Bruecher (Swiss Films), Eva Vezer (Magyar Filmunio of Hungary) and Simon Perry (Irish Film Board).
For the last 10 years, up to 27 young and promising thesps (up to age 35) from across Europe have taken part in the program, which is essentially a series of presentations at the Berlin Film Festival designed to lay the groundwork for a star system in Europe — or at least raise name recognition of select talent in neighboring countries. A total of 194 thesps have taken part, but the number has now grown so unwieldy as the EFP expanded, it will be sharply reduced.
Variety Critics’ Choice
Over the last ten years, Variety’s film critics have chosen 100 ambitious and edgy films from around Europe, which are then screened at the Karlovy Vary Intl. Film Festival as official selections. This fest sidebar also brings in all of the 10 annual filmmakers and presents them to the global press, while also celebrating them with the fest’s biggest party.
Launched in April, the program to promote a selection of the best European films had mixed results in year one: a hit with sold-out houses in Madrid, but modest results in Berlin and London. Cinemas in those three cities screened national box office hits from across Europe for a week. Program, designed to put the international spotlight on a few home market winners, will be expanded.
Film Sales Support
A low-budget project to support pics, especially from smaller countries, screening at selected fests to boost sales of Euro films outside the European Union. EFP co-finances the production and subtitling of prints; assists producers, directors and sales agents to accompany their pics to fests; and helps with publicity.