PARIS – Wrapping Saturday, Feb. 6, attendance at the Third Paris Images Trade Show ramped up strongly this year. One example: Paris Images Location Expo recorded a 25% increase in exhibitors and nearly a 50% hike in participants.
Notwithstanding the terrorist attacks in November 2015, film production levels in the Paris region have quickly bounced back and are expected to attain record levels in 2016 as a result of the new 30% rate in force for the domestic and international tax rebate programs.
Major shoots confirmed for 2016 in the Paris area include Indian feature film “Befikre,” which has a 13-week shoot, with 10 weeks in Paris. There will also be a few days of shooting on “Fifty Shades Darker.” Christopher Nolan will lense “Dunkirk” in the North of France in May, and Neil Jordan will shoot the TV series “Rivieira” in the South of France. An undisclosed major U.S. TV series is planning to shoot in the Paris region in the second half of the year, according to officials.
Olivier Rene-Veillon, prexy of the Ile de France Film Commission, summed up his satisfaction with this year’s edition: “With 3,000 participants, compared to 2,200 last year, Paris Images Location Expo has been a great success showing the mobilization of key locations and studios for the new international productions, which are going to benefit from the strong increase in the tax rebate schemes in 2016.”
Paris Images Trade Show is currently hosting its last event – the AFC Micro Salon – that wraps tomorrow. Micro-Salon is organized by the French Cinematographer’s Association, the AFC, and is held in the FEMIS national film school in Montmartre. It showcases cutting edge filming, sound and lighting equipment from France and the rest of the world – with 56 exhibitors this year. It is also the main annual meet for cinematographers.
Focuses of this year’s edition include the new generation of drones and new high-performance miniaturized cameras, such as the 2.3 KG Alexa Mini, that can be used with drones. Other key topics at the event included 70mm lenses, due to the development of bigger sensors, and new LED lighting systems.
Each year the Micro Salon honors the cinematographers from a guest country. In 2014 it was Russia, last year Italy, and now Iran. Iranian d.p. Mahmoud Kalari (“A Separation,” “The Past”) received a tribute during the event.
Jacques Delacoux, owner of Transvideo and Aaton Digital spoke to Variety at the Micro Salon. Since March 2014, he has chaired the umbrella trade organization, Affect – the Association of French Cinematographic Equipment Manufacturers, whose founding members are Aaton Digital, K5600-Lighting, Thales Angénieux and Transvideo.
During 2015, Affect sent a delegation of 20 film students from four film schools – FEMIS and Louis Lumiere in Paris, the Amsterdam film school, and Lodz film school, to Poland’s Camerimage, an event dedicated to cinematographers.
“People working in the film industry in Paris tend to think that we’re in the center of the world,” suggested Delacoux. “That’s why it’s good to travel abroad, to network and learn about techniques being applied in other places.”
Affect staged two exhibitions in 2015 in India and during CamerImage, and representatives also attended 20 different trade fairs around the world.
In 2016 Delacoux foresees two possible developments for Affect – either expansion to include more members or adoption of a more informal structure.
Delacoux is a big fan of the AFC Micro Salon. This year, Aaton Digital and Transvideo presented new products such as a new focus-puller assistant, the Cine Multi-Track system, and a 24-track mixer recorder, Cantar X3.
“The Micro Salon is a wonderful event,” he said. “This year I think that it’s attained full maturity. All the available space is used. We’re seeing wonderful new developments such as the Arri Mini, for which we’ve generated new wireless systems, and a new generation of drones. There’s also the chance to see state-of-the-art technology such as the renowned modular camera crane from Louma, together with many other wonderful equipment options.”
Underscoring sustained growth, 2016’s Paris Images edition included the second edition of the Digital Creation Genie Awards, and a focus on co-productions between France and South Korea during Paris Images Cinema/Industrie du Reve.