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International Film Festival Rotterdam has unveiled its selection of 20 feature film projects and five immersive projects for the 40th edition of CineMart, the festival’s co-production market, which runs from Jan. 29 to Feb. 1. Following two online editions, the market is hosted in-person for the first time since 2020.

Filmmakers from Indonesia, Paraguay, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Ukraine are among the lineup, which features subjects such as hip-hop, migration and gender fluidity, as well as a cowboy.

Head of IFFR Pro, Inke Van Loocke, said: “In fragmented times, bringing together incredible filmmakers and projects from so many different territories continues to be an invaluable contribution to filmmaking across the world.

“Together with producers in the Rotterdam Lab, filmmakers in the selection, and our wider press and industry family, it will be a heartwarming feeling to experience the buzz of a proper IFFR in De Doelen again.”

Sweden’s Plattform Produktion – the company behind Cannes winner “Triangle of Sadness” – returns to CineMart to present “Redoubt” by John Skoog, a continuation of a 2014 short of the same name, with a portrait of a farm-worker Karl-Göran Persson who turned his home into a fortress.

Also among the features are Kurt Oderson’s “Apetown,” which is a South African urban story weaving together hip-hop, graffiti, segregation and camaraderie; Anna Zamecka’s hybrid documentary “Słońce,” which follows the stories of young Iraqi-Kurds making the journey to Belarus. In “Boifriend,” U.K.-based Jack Goessens presents a character-driven story on the fluidity of gender and sexuality, exploring dysphoria and euphoria.

Set in Dordrecht in the Netherlands, Marta Parlatore explores a Polish migrant’s struggle between creative expression and motherhood in “Grushka,” which also takes part on the BoostNL program.

Several titles in the selection have previously been supported by IFFR’s Hubert Bals Fund. “Manta Ray” (IFFR, 2019) director Phuttiphong Aroonpheng presents a confrontation between a displaced migrant and the Thai government official who burnt his house down in “The Burning Giants.”

In Barbara Sarasola-Day’s “Little War,” an Anglo-Argentine family at the foot of the Andes confront the on-coming Malvinas/Falklands war.

Marina Stepanska explores the lives of three generations of Ukrainian women in “Consider Vera.”

A young woman’s journey through Colombia in search of her missing brother’s vanished spirit is the premise for “Las tierras que te buscan” by Juanita Onzaga, whose short “Tomorrow Is a Water Palace” screened in competition at IFFR 2022.

Pablo Lamar won the Special Jury Award in the Tiger Competition at IFFR 2016 for his debut “La última tierra,” and now presents “Remanso,” set in the 1970s during the dictatorship in Paraguay.

As part of a cooperation between CineMart and WEMW (When East Meets West), the co-production forum at Trieste Film Festival, “When the Kids Sing the Hits” by Mina Djukic will have the chance to present at both markets. The project is a portrait of three friends during the last days of Yugoslavia.

Five projects comprise the lineup of immersive projects at CineMart, chosen from those presented on the Content strand of Impulse at VRDays’s Immersive Tech Week. Rapper, artist and filmmaker Baloji (“Zombies,” IFFR 2020) presents “Anti-Muse” – a surreal narrative combining music, dance and scenography set among the tropical plants of the Royal Greenhouses, a symbol of Belgian colonization of Congo. “Gay Simulator” by Iris van der Meule is an interactive virtual reality artwork and video game, which will immerse the user in the experiences of a lesbian girl.

IFFR is set to welcome back industry, press and audiences for a full on-site return from Jan. 25 to Feb. 5. CineMart takes place from Jan. 29 to Feb. 1.

The IFFR Pro Awards will be presented on Jan. 31, including the Eurimages Co-production Development Award, the ARTEKino International Prize, the Wouter Barendrecht Award and the 4DR Studios Award. A brand new award will also be given in partnership with VIPO (Visual Industry Promotion Organization), which promotes the Japanese content industry.

The IFFR Pro Hub will open for its program of round-tables and expert sessions from Jan. 27. The training program for emerging producers Rotterdam Lab also returns, this year inviting back select participants from the previous two online editions alongside new producers selected for 2023. An IFFR Pro Talk is scheduled for Jan. 30.

New to the industry lineup this year is the Darkroom program of work-in-progress screenings for select former CineMart and HBF projects, taking place on Feb. 1. Selected teams will receive expert consultancy and have the chance to present their work for an exclusive panel of international sales agents, festival programmers and buyers. The selection will be announced in January 2023.

CineMart 2023 complete selection

108 Days, Lucky Kuswandi, Indonesia
Produced by: Palari Films

7 P.M. on a Sunday, Sevgi Eker, Finland
Produced by: Helsinki-filmi Oy

Apetown, Kurt Oderson, South Africa
Produced by: Apetown Productions, BuMP Films, Azania Rizing Productions, Serious Films

Boifriend, Jack Goessens, United Kingdom
Produced by: Bombito Productions

The Burning Giants, Phuttiphong Aroonpheng, Thailand
Produced by: Diversion

Brace Yourself, Thati Pele, South Africa, Netherlands
Produced by: URUCU, BALDR Film

Cerro Corá, Francisco Márquez, Argentina, Paraguay, Brazil
Produced by: Pensar con las manos, Tekoha, Terceira Margem, Multiverso

Consider Vera, Marina Stepanska, Ukraine
Produced by: ESSE Production House

Eldorado, Alaa Eddine Aljem, Morocco, France
Produced by: Le Moindre Geste, In Vivo Films

Eyes Closed, Jenneke Boeijink, Netherlands
Produced by: BIND

Grushka, Marta Parlatore, Netherlands, Belgium
Produced by: Volya Films, A Private View

Las tierras que te buscan, Juanita Onzaga, Colombia
Produced by: Marginal Cine

Little War, Barbara Sarasola-Day, Argentina
Produced by: Pucará Cine

The Poison Cat, Tian Guan, China
Produced by: Beijing Guanyu Film

Redoubt, John Skoog, Sweden
Produced by: Plattform Produktion, BCD Film

Remanso, Pablo Lamar, Paraguay, Brazil, Netherlands, Argentina
Produced by: Sapukai Cine, Sabaté Films, Sancho Filmes, Revolver Amsterdam, Fortuna Films, Tarea Fina.

Słońce, Anna Zamecka, Poland
Produced by: Madants

The Surrogate, Ali Jaberansari, Mexico, United Kingdom
Produced by: The Lift, Here & There Productions

Testa o Croce?, Alessio Rigo de Righi, Matteo Zoppis, Italy, France
Produced by: Ring Film, Shellac Sud

When the Kids Sing the Hits, Mina Djukic, Serbia, Montenegro
Produced by: Sense Production, Adriatic Western

Immersive

369, Ananda Safo, France
Produced by: TEN2TEN Films

Ancestors, Hanna Haaslahti, Finland, Germany
Produced by: Fantomatico, Poike Production, High Road Stories

Anti-Muse, Baloji, Belgium
Produced by: Amok, Wrong Men

Gay Simulator, Iris van der Meule, Netherlands
Produced by: Studio Biarritz

The Mask Maker and the Tree, Abner Preis, Netherlands
Produced by: Institute of Time