Berlin catches up to Cannes (2)
by Annika Pham
Another genre continued to prove popular: chiller films. On the commercial end, Spanish director Jose Antonio Bayona’s The Orphanage, co-produced by Guillermo del Toro, was pre-sold by Wild Bunch to Scandinavia (Triangelfilm) and the US (Picture House); Focus Features pre-sold Neil Marshall’s Doomsday to Portugal (Lusomundo), German speaking territories (Concorde), Greece (Odeon) and as part of a three-picture deal to France (SND) and Scandinavia (Scanbox).
Buyers hungry for quality children films could (as usual) visit the Scandinavian stand, but the hottest children film this year – animated title Lotte From Gadgetville [+see also:
film profile] (see article) – came from further north, Estonia and Latvia, to the satisfaction of Stuttgart-based seller Sola Media.
Non-US competition festival films had buyers almost crying famine during the first four days, but some later entries proved successful, such as David Mackenzie’s Hallam Foe [+see also:
film profile], sold by Independent Film Sales to Germany/Austria (Prokino), Scandinavia (Nordisk), Greece (Rosebud) and Switzerland (Monopole Pathé); and Bavaria Film International sealed half a dozen sales on Jiri Menzel’s I Served the King of England [+see also:
film profile], including Greece/Cyprus (Ama Films) and all of Latin America.
A handful of quality French auteur films were also snapped up by key territories, such as Lady Chatterley [+see also:
film profile], sold by Films Distribution to the UK (Artificial Eye) and Scandinavia (Future Films), and Pierre Salvadori’s Priceless [+see also:
film profile], sold by Wild Bunch to the UK (Icon), US (Samuel Goldwyn) and Scandinavia (NonStop).
“There are many more buyers from the US and Japan, which a couple of years ago was only represented by two or three buyers, is now here in force”, stressed Nordisk sales executive Susan Wendt, adding, “The whole world seems to be here now”.
This is excellent news for EFM organizers who in only two years (following MIFED’s self-destruction) have successfully managed to absorb the growing demand from professionals and restabilise the key film markets in the calendar year.
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