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Zurich Festival’s 20-Title Film Market Confirms Dates

Zurich Film Festival
Courtesy: Zurich Film Festival

The Zurich Film Festival has revealed more details of its first Zurich Market, an on-site event organized in collaboration with Spain’s San Sebastian Film Festival that will see the Swiss event hosting screenings in local cinema theaters for about 20 new independent titles.

Described by the festival in a press statement as “highly anticipated titles,” the movies will be screened from Sept. 25 to 28, the festival announced.

“Due to the ongoing global pandemic, many independent films with artistic merit were unable to hold market premieres and now threaten to remain without theatrical release,” explained Christian Jungen, artistic director of the Zurich Film Festival. He added: “The fact that the initiative is meeting with great interest in both the European and American film industry is of course highly encouraging.”

“We want this initiative to serve as an opportunity for films unable to screen, to be shown to an audience of buyers and distributors and to do our bit in revitalizing the global film industry,” said José Luis Rebordinos, director of the San Sebastian Film Festival, which will provide what is described as “strategic support” for the Zurich Market, but will not host a physical edition of the market.

Given San Sebastian runs Sept. 18 to 26, wrapping on the second day of the Zurich Market, it remains to be seen how this strategic support will play out.

In addition to the new market, the Zurich Film Festival will also stage its well-established Zurich Summit, bringing together international and national producers, financiers, sales executives and creators in film, TV and entertainment for an event that has been distinguished by its financial focus and the caliber of its top speakers.

Both Zurich and San Sebastian plan physical festival events, though some of San Sebastian’s industry strands, such as its Europe-Latin America Co-production Forum, will be held online given that Latin America is still majorly in lockdown and its film producers mostly unable to travel.

Further details of the Zurich Market that still have to be confirmed include whether the Market, as was originally announced in late March, will still source titles originally selected for on-site screenings from SXSW and Tribeca festivals, given that U.S. distributors are unable to attend screenings in Zurich, and which agencies are joining CAA Media Finance in supporting the Zurich-San Sebastian initiative with sales titles and packages.