Swiss Films presents five new projects at Visions du Réel
- The Swiss agency presented an exclusive preview of work-in-progress, featuring titles by Felipe Monroy, Laura Elena Cordero, Marion Neumann, Valerie Blankenbyl and Rolando Colla
During a meeting held in a now familiar virtual form on Monday 4 May, organised by Swiss Films in collaboration with Visions du Réel, journalists and film sector professionals were given the opportunity to discover five new productions and co-productions from Switzerland. All of them are in search of distributers and international sales agents, not to mention festivals willing to host their premieres. The five directors, both female and male, accompanied by their respective producers, also a good male-female mix, each had ten minutes to convince those present of the value and interest of their films.
Standing tall amongst them is the third feature film by the Colombian director and former student of the Geneva University of Art & Design (HEAD) Felipe Monroy, Children of the Wind. Monroy feeds off of personal experience in his films, exploring immigration, lives lived on the margins and how the violence of the past can influence the future, always with an eye to resilience. Children of the Wind hones in on the recent history of Colombia where, between 2002 and 2010, thousands of youngsters from poorer areas were kidnapped, tortured and killed by the military, who subsequently presented them to the public as guerrilleros. In so doing, the government sought to glorify its commitment to the fight against drug-trafficking. The film tells of the fight for truth and justice fought by three grieving mothers of murdered youngsters. Accompanying them in their seemingly endless quest is a non-commissioned officer who refuses to give up the fight, both at the risk of his own life and that of his family. Children of the Wind is produced by Swiss firm Adok Films in co-production with Les Films d’Ici (France) and Tatiante DC (Colombia).
There were numerous women directors present, with three especially interesting projects put forward. Among them, Laura Elena Cordero (director and producer) with her work Shaping Dancers in the Manner of Béjart, which slips into the rehearsal rooms of Lausanne’s Rudra Béjart Ballet School (produced by Lausanne-based group Vivace Films); The Mushrooms Speaks (produced by Geneva’s Intermezzo) by Marion Neumann, an intriguing cinematic treatise exploring the possible alliances between humans and mushrooms, and The Bubble by Valerie Blankenbyl (a co-production between Zurich’s CognitoFilms and Austrian outfit Golden Girls Filmproduktion & Filmservices), which examines The Village, a luxurious, macro elderly people’s home in Florida, in all its crazyness and contradictions.
The final project presented was What Remains of the Lie [+see also:
film profile] by Rolando Colla (produced by Peacock Films in collaboration with SRF/SRG SSR), a documentary on the delicate case of the fictitious autobiography written by Bruno Wilkomirsk, a supposed survivor of the Nazi concentration camps.
Swiss Films further announced that it had established payment methods for the funding and support of the Swiss cinema industry during the Covid-19 crisis. These measures have been implemented with the aim of supporting film festivals (reimbursement of expenses linked to flights and hotel stays for cancelled or postponed events), distributers (deferred or cancelled cinema releases), VOD (support for Swiss film distributers on international VOD platforms) and international sales and programmes (such as reimbursement of flights, booking amendments or cancellations). Full details can be found on the Swiss Films website.
Swiss Films is in regular contact with international festivals and with film industry representatives, also through the prism of the European Film Promotion (EFP). It publishes on its website all the latest decisions regarding the cancellation, continuation or postponement of festivals. The Swiss Films team is also happy to advise Swiss films on optimum strategies for international distribution.
(Translated from Italian)
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