Rome’s MIA film and TV market chief Lucia Milazzotto is stepping down to head up a newly created sales and marketing unit of Italy’s Cinecittà Studios which is undergoing a radical revamp and looking to become continental Europe’s top production hub.

The surprise announcement, made on Thursday by Cinecittà CEO Nicola Maccanico, comes just days after MIA wrapped its seventh edition on Sunday, having boosted its standing on the global calendar as a prominent emerging industry hub in Europe.

Who will replace Milazzotto at MIA’s helm is still unclear.

Milazzotto’s move from MIA, which she shepherded to success, to Cinecittà is in line with Italy’s comprehensive government-driven effort to drive the local film and TV production industry which is considered strategic for the country’s post-pandemic economy.

The iconic studios are set for a major overhaul involving many new state-of-the art soundstages, a bigger backlot and ambitions to become continental Europe’s top filming facilities thanks to a multi-million euro cash injection provided by the European Union’s post-pandemic recovery fund.

Maccanico, who is a former former senior Warner Bros. executive and Sky Italia content chief, has now created a new sales and marketing unit that Milazzotto will head.

The goal is to bolster his revamp plan by strengthening the market position and brand awareness of the studios both nationally and especially internationally.

The new Cinecittà unit will be in charge of new business development and marketing strategy for the marketing of studio space and services including post-production and also related to the organization of events on the Cinecittà lot.

Milazzotto will become the main point person at the studio for Italian, European and international productions. She will contribute to the definition of Cinecittà’s new overall sales strategy, its media campaign and commercial development strategies and will be seeking medium and long term partnerships.

“Cinecitta must accompany its infrastructural growth with an equally fast commercial growth,” Maccanico said in a statement.

“Within this logic, we’ve created the sales and marketing department, which will be led by an authoritative and recognized manager such as Lucia Milazzotto, who has led the way in building MIA’s great success,” he added.

“Lucia will further strengthen the Cinecittà management team and I am proud to have her by my side for the challenges that await us in the coming years.”