The 2018 edition of Open Doors hands out its awards
by Vassilis Economou
- LOCARNO 2018: The oldest of the Locarno Pro initiatives has ended its cycle of focuses on Southern Asia while also announcing the new countries for the upcoming three-year programme
The 16th edition of Locarno Pro’s Open Doors platform (1-7 August) has wrapped by announcing its winners for the Hub co-production platform and the Lab producer training workshop. Furthermore, this was the last edition of the three-year focus on Southern Asia that started in 2016 and was dedicated to Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
The Open Doors Hub gave eight projects, each accompanied by a director and one attached producer, the opportunity to introduce their works to European and international professionals intent on expanding collaborations and furthering financing.
The jury has awarded the following projects to support their development and production:
The Open Doors Grant, totalling CHF 50,000, goes to two projects and is co-financed by the Swiss film production fund Visions Sud Est – with the backing of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) – and the City of Bellinzona:
Support for production (CHF 35,000): The Women - The Maw Naing (Myanmar)
Support for development (CHF 15,000): Mother - Sanjeewa Pushpakumara (Sri Lanka/France)
The €8,000 development grant from the CNC went to Sand City by Mahde Hasan (Bangladesh), and the director also won an award from the Winterthur International Short Film Festival, in partnership with Villa Sträuli, for a two-month residency. The ARTE Kino Open Doors International Prize, worth €6,000, was awarded to A Year of Cold by Min Bahadur Bham (Nepal/France). Finally, The Women received the first-ever award from the Norwegian South Film Fund Sørfond, which allows the project to take part in its “Pitching from the South” platform.
In the initiative’s training workshop, the Open Doors Lab, the TorinoFilmLab grant allows one of the producers to take part in the TFL Meeting Event in Turin in November, and Sumudu Malalagama, of Green Pictures (Sri Lanka), was the winner.
The new three-year cycle running from 2019-2021 will be focused on South-East Asia (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam) and Mongolia. The head of Open Doors, Sophie Bourdon, commented: “We are delighted to be setting out to discover Mongolia and to be returning to South-East Asia, a region that has witnessed growth across its film industries over the past decade, with an increasing number of movies being screened both at the Locarno Film Festival and at other gatherings worldwide. Thanks to its intervention over a three-year period, Open Doors can go beyond the traditional role of a co-production platform, supporting directors and producers in the long term and also fostering regional partnerships, in particular with the current Open Doors community already established in South-East Asia.”
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