In today’s Global Bulletin, the European Film Awards detail this year’s special five-day virtual ceremony, the Spain Film Commission extends an invitation to international productions, ITV Studios sells more than 300 hours of content in India and the National Lottery announces a special Pantoland performance for key workers.
The 2020 European Film Awards have announced measures to host a COVID-19 era edition, “The EFAs at Eight,” including a series of live-streamed virtual events taking place Dec. 8-12.
This year’s entire program will be made available on the EFA website, www.europeanfilmawards.eu, and to several international streaming and broadcasting partners. Nominees and winners be invited to participate through live video conferencing.
Things kick off on Tuesday, Dec. 8, with “From Survival to Revival: Building the Post-Covid Future,” a roundtable discussing the re-structuring, re-engineering and re-alignment of the European film industry during and post-pandemic.
On Wednesday, Wim Wenders and Marion Döring will host the EFA Excellence Awards for cinematography, editing, production design, costume design, make-up and hair, original score, sound, and visual effects.
Thursday will see Mike Goodridge distribute the Eurimages, short film and EUFA awards. He will be back again on Friday evening to dole out the prizes for comedy and animation.
Finally, on Saturday evening, the EFA Awards Grand Finale will take place with prizes for best European documentary, discovery, actress, actor, screenwriter, director and film announced. It will also host the inaugural awarding of the LUX European Audience Film Award, given out by the European Parliament and the European Film Academy in partnership with the European Commission and Europa Cinemas.
The Spain Film Commission hosted a live-streamed conference on Thursday assuring viewers that the country is open for business and will continue to be an attractive shooting option for international productions and co-productions during and post-COVID.
Spain Film Commission president Carlos Rosado welcomed more than 250 industry professionals to the live stream, moderated by VP of the Spain Film Commission, Teresa Azcona and featuring Secuoya Studios president James Costos, La Claqueta CEO Olmo Figueredo and Babieka Films CEO Denise O’Dell.
Among several conclusions reached by the panel, it was agreed that the Spanish production industry has adapted quickly and assertively in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, despite Spain being one of the earliest and hardest-hit countries in Europe. It was stated that far more shoots scheduled for 2020 chose to reschedule rather than cancel or relocate, and many of those have already gotten back to work or have new dates planned to resume filming.
Early in the pandemic, Spanish authorities enacted a series of regulatory changes, with input from local professionals, meant to allow both domestic and international productions to resume shooting in the country, while fostering partnerships between local companies and international co-producers looking to film in Spain. Several high-profile shoots took place in Spain during the pandemic, including Season 5 of Netflix’s “Money Heist,” HBO’s “30 Coins,” Movistar Plus’ most ambitious original series to date “Tell me Who I Am” and Pedro Almodovar’s first English-language short film “The Human Voice,” starring Tilda Swinton.
The panel wrapped with the tease of “enormous interest from U.S. equity funds” in backing infrastructure projects related to audiovisual production in Spain. Something worth looking out for in the coming months.
ITV Studios has closed a raft of sales deals in India accounting for more than 300 hours of content in scripted and non-scripted formats, including U.S. version company’s crowned jewel reality program “Love Island,” secured by Viacom 18.
Among the deals, Lionsgate Play picked World Productions’ upcoming thriller “Vigil”; “Romulus” from Cattleya, Groenlandia and Sky; Mammoth Screen’s “The Singapore Grip,” adapted from J.G. Farrell’s novel by Oscar-winning screenwriter Christopher Hampton; and “Little Birds” from Warp Films.
Among other key deals, Discovery Plus acquired “Attenborough’s Journey” from Atlantic Productions; “Impossible Engineering” and “The Indian Dream Hotel” from Twofour; and the U.K. version of “Autopsy: The Last Hours of…” from ITV Studios company Potato.
The U.K. National Lottery has announced it will host a special one-off of this year’s holiday pantomime at the London Palladium attended by and dedicated to key workers from frontline projects funded by the lottery.
Produced by Qdos Entertainment, The National Lottery’s Pantoland will be held Dec. 11 and invite hundreds of key workers and their family to attend. Attendees will be selected from a range of fields including, but not limited to, NHS frontline staff, police, ambulance, education and retail workers.
This year’s Pantoland stars Julian Clary, Elaine Paige and will see Beverley Knight makes her panto debut. Pantoland at The Palladium will run for three weeks, closing on Jan. 3.