Glory (2016)
Waves (2016)
María (and Everybody Else) (2016)
Graduation (2016)
United States of Love (2016)
Personal Shopper (2016)
Zoology (2016)
previous
next
Choose your language en | es | fr | it

email print share on facebook share on twitter share on google+

Country Focus: Luxembourg

Luxembourg: Seeking global appreciation for their home productions

by 

Luxembourg: Seeking global appreciation for their home productions

- Extraordinary Tales, directed by Raul Garcia

(This article has been published in the Cannes 2016 Market News daily by Le Film Français)

Since July 2014, the production funding system managed by Film Fund Luxembourg has relied on one direct selective support mechanism. The former system, which was based on audiovisual investment certificates (Certificats d’investissements audiovisuels – Ciav) had not been in use for the past three years due to its continually lessening attractiveness. In order to compensate for the ensuing financial loss, the Luxembourgish government increased the fund’s annual allocation based on the yearly average of previously granted Ciavs. “A bold move that proves the voluntarism of the authorities involved,” says Iris ProductionsNicolas Steil. “Incentives such as the certificates or the tax shelter supposed non-tax revenue while advance on receipts is an extra post in the government’s budget.” Currently, the fund is granted a budget of €100m over a 3-year period. In 2015, 51 projects received selective financial aid, for a combined total of close to €31m (read below). This figure is testament to a positive dynamic, which is embodied, most notably, by the arrival of new producers on the scene. “The number of production companies has grown by 25% over the past 3 years,” explains Claude Waringo (Samsa Films). “For a long time there have been between 10 and 12 of us in the Ulpa (Union of Luxembourgish Audiovisual Producers). Currently there are 24 members. Half a dozen of companies specialise in animated films and others work in new media, which are becoming increasingly popular.” Although its budget has remained the same, the fund is still the only funding option available to an ever-increasing level of demand. Yet the funding cap seems to have been reached. “Therein lies the crux of the problem, but that’s the extent of our country,” states Nicolas Steil. “We are a small market, and we don’t have the partners that you can find in neighbouring countries, like television broadcasters or distributers providing MG.” Therefore, producers are starting to think about developing complementary systems, such as those that use venture capital as recourse. An even more logical approach, given that Luxembourg has become the biggest hub of investment funds in Europe. “This could represent a second option, which would provide support through advances on receipts. This would allow our films to have access to the ambitious funding means that they deserve.”

(The article continues below - Commercial information)Cine Iberoamericano Int

A high level of expertise

On an international level, Luxembourgish co-producers have already earned a reputation of reliability. Most of these companies have already set up subsidiaries in surrounding countries. Over the course of approximately twenty years, Luxembourgish technicians have acquired a high level of expertise, reinforced by their multilingualism. At the same time, the professional sector has structured itself around professional organisations, and several companies recently came together to give birth to Filmland: a group of film and post-production studios based in Kehlen, around 15 km outside of Luxembourg City. Furthermore, there have been increasing numbers of Luxembourgish films appearing in major international film festivals. Two animated co-productions, Raul Garcia’s Extraordinary Tales [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
and Song of the Sea [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Tomm Moore
film profile
]
(produced by Melusine Productions) were in competition at the Tokyo Anime Award Festival. Extraordinary Tales then went on to be shown at Annecy. At the Trophées Francophones du Cinéma (Trophies for French-language Film) presented in Abidjan, two Luxembourgish films were in the running: Jacques Molitor’s Mammejong [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
(Lucil Film) and Donato Rotunno’s Baby(a)lone [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Donato Rotunno
film profile
]
(Iris Productions). Two Iris Productions co-productions, Florian Gallenberger’s Colonia [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
and Terence Davies Sunset Song [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Terence Davies
film profile
]
, were also presented at Toronto. The next step involves ensuring that both domestic and international audiences know that Luxembourgish films exist. Since the success of a film like Andy Bausch’s The Unemployment Club – which registered more than 40,000 admissions in 2002 (close to 10% of the total population) –, several films that were shot, either partially or entirely, in Luxembourgish have united local audiences. As such, Christopher Wagner’s films Blind Spot [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Christophe Wagner
film profile
]
(Doudege Wénkel) and Tomorrow, after the War [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
(Eng nei Zaït), produced by Samsa, also achieved a high number of admissions (22,500) following their releases in 2012 and 2015 respectively. Produced by Samsa on a budget of €3.8m, which was achieved through an 80/20 Luxemburgish-Belgian co-production, Tomorrow, after the War will be distributed internationally in Belgium, Germany and France. This double success has allowed Samsa to start working on the director’s third feature – based on a successful French novel, the screenplay of which is currently being written –, whose shooting should take place in 2017. The Luxembourgish cinema industry has, as such, started to win over new audiences. The Oscar for Best Animated Short Film, which was awarded to the Luxembourgish Mr. Hublot in 2014, is proof that such a goal has entered the realms of possibility.

Newsletter

Seneca's Day Lithuania

Follow us on

facebook twitter rss

Home Sweet Home