Another successful edition of Rome’s International Audiovisual Market comes to an end
by Birgit Heidsiek
- As a significant meeting point for film, television, documentary and animation, Rome’s MIA is attracting a growing number of industry professionals
The second edition of the International Audiovisual Market (MIA) in Rome attracted more than 1,500 participants from 58 countries, representing an increase of 6% over last year. Located at the Boscolo in the centre of Rome, the MIA, a meeting point for film, television, documentary and animation, brought together more than 500 producers and commissioning editors, around 350 buyers and 130 international sales agents.
Positioned as a European market between Toronto and the AFM, as well as being a complementary event to MIPCOM, the four-day event presented 100 films, 42 projects for films, and drama, documentary and factual series, as well as 16 works in progress in the new What’s Next Italy section. “We are bringing projects that are still in post-production to the attention of buyers in order to offer them a first look,” states MIA director Lucia Milazzotto, “so that they can track them throughout the next markets.” Among the filmmakers who presented their projects at this springboard for new Italian films were Ferzan Ozpetek, Francesca Comencini, Giovanni Veronesi, Susanna Nicchiarelli, Fabio Mollo and Toni D’Angelo.
At the new MIA DOC Arts and Culture Pitching Forum, independent producers met with international and Italian decision makers to discuss international collaborations, pre-sales and co-productions. The project Colpo Maestro by Pierpaolo De Sanctis (Gli Invisibili – Esordi nel cinema italiano 2000-2006), in which two music lovers are trying to find the lost master tape of Ennio Morricone’s score for Danger: Diabolik, was invited to Sunny Side of the Doc. The French documentary event has signed a collaboration deal with the MIA. “We are building bridges,” says Milazzotto; “markets should never be in competition.”
Traditionally, sales agents and buyers provide gap financing by the time a film is about to be finalised. “Meanwhile, they are getting more and more involved in the production during the development stage,” underlines Milazzotto, who also points out what an important impact financing has on a movie. “The tax incentives are drastically changing the shape of the market in terms of public funding because they are no longer linked to quality or any kind of subjective criteria.” Recently, tax incentives have been increasing not only in Italy, but all across Europe. “This is basically changing the approach of the content because it becomes a matter of financing and not of cultural interest.”
New tax-shelter systems, the ongoing trend towards pre-sales and co-productions in the distribution landscape, as well as the importance of copyright, were some of the key issues discussed at panels, workshops and master classes. About 300 professionals from the international audiovisual industry participated in 42 MIA events, such as the Maia Workshops. Designed to enable up-and-coming producers to share their experiences and projects, the European programme presented master classes on Marketing Strategies and Audience Development, covering a range of platforms from cinemas to the internet.
“To use a cinematic metaphor, it seems as though we have succeeded in bringing together the ideal cast of participants – in terms of producers, commissioning editors, buyers, sales agents, institutions and professionals – for an ambitious project,” concludes Milazzoto. “This makes MIA a privileged, transversal and transnational meeting place where you can find all of the possible partners for your specific goals regarding industrial development and production. It is both Italian and global, independent, with a strong international stance and great productive value – be it for film, drama series, documentary, factual or animated titles.”
Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.