The EFM looks set to be a compass for the newest developments
by Birgit Heidsiek
- The upcoming European Film Market in Berlin is starting up various new initiatives
As the first major industry event of the year, the European Film Market (EFM) will attract thousands of international buyers, sellers, producers and other film professionals when it kicks off on 5 February, the opening day of the 65th Berlin International Film Festival. The exhibition spaces at Martin-Gropius-Bau and the Marriott Hotel in Potsdamer Platz are already fully booked. Furthermore, the EFM is starting up some new initiatives, such as Drama Series Days, a platform for high-quality series, and the Bridging the Dragon network, which will strengthen networking between European and Chinese producers. The first Drama Series Days will take place on 9 and 10 February in partnership with the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW.
“With our programme, we want to expand the EFM into new business fields, develop the synergies between the festival and the EFM, and sustain the EFM's position as one of the most important film markets worldwide,” says Matthijs Wouter Knol, the new director of the EFM. With the EFM Buyers' Lounge and EFM Producers' Hub at the Martin-Gropius-Bau, the film market provides two new exclusive meeting points for international film professionals.
“I'm very pleased to be forging new paths together with Matthijs that will develop the market further,” comments Beki Probst, who acts as the EFM's president and consulting advisor. For the first time, the EFM is opening its doors to Berlin's innovative creative industries: EFM Startups gives ten successful start-up entrepreneurs the opportunity to network with the international film and media industry. This initiative is developed together with Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg and Startup Germany eV, Berlin.
Further industry events include Meet the Docs, which is organised in cooperation with the European Documentary Network (EDN), the Berlinale Talents Market Hub in partnership with Canon, as well as American Independents in Berlin, which brings the members of the renowned indie institutions IFP (Independent Filmmaker Project) and the Sundance Institute together at the Martin-Gropius-Bau. Potential buyers and fans of contemporary German cinema can check out LOLA at Berlinale, which will showcase the highlights from 2014.