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26 December 2005

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  • A big boost for the Copenhagen Film Fund

    Producers with a keen eye for Copenhagen might want to look more closely towards the Danishcapital in a year or so. In January 2007 The Copenhagen Film Fund willbe operational with an annual budget of $6.5m (5.5m Euros). The aim of the fundis to attract international film productions to the Capital Region ofCopenhagen. Thi
  • AFI unveils 2005 moments of significance

    The American FilmInstitute (AFI) has unveiled its moments of significance in 2005, which includemedia consolidation, artistic responses to 9/11, and the downward trend intheatrical admissions.Pointing to consolidation, AFI officers noted the corporate acquisitions of MGMand DreamWorks, adding in a statement: "AFI hopes that this trend forconsolidation will respect the rich history that marks our
  • Alliance Atlantis, New Line renew output deal

    Alliance Atlantis' Motion PictureDistribution and New Line Cinema have agreed to renew their distributionagreement through Dec 31, 2008.The deal commenced in 1989 and covers all media in Canada.The parties did not disclose financial terms at time of going to press.
  • Angel-A

    Dir/scr: Luc Besson. Fr. 2005. 90mins.Absent from behind the camera since his 1999 medievalepic, The Messenger: The Story of Joan ofArc, Luc Besson makes a modest directorialcomeback with Angel-A.The French film industry'sbest-kept secret of 2005, the offbeat romance was shot on the sly in Paris last summer(while
  • Asia Focus: China and the international market

    Due to its location and perhaps also timing, the recent CineAsia conference in Beijing (Dec 13-15) turned out to be an opportune platform for the US studios to air some of their long-held opinions and grievances about the China film market. Likewise, China's major film organisations didn't hold back on expressing their own views about how this complex and potentially huge market should be developed. The two sides got down to business on the first night when Zhao Shi, vic
  • Berlin reveals first Competition titles

    New films by Terrence Malick, Chen Kaige and Oskar Roehler are among the first nine titles confirmed for the Berlin Film Festival next February.Star power accompanying the six world premieres which have been announced should include: Sigourney Weaver, Heath Ledger, George Clooney and Matt Damon among others. The premieres include Roehler'sadaptation of Michel Houellebecq's controversialbestseller The Elementary Particles,entitled
  • British Film Institute to refurbish its South Bank venue

    The British Film Institute (bfi)announced on Tuesday that a significantly refurbished and improved venue on theSouth Bank will open in Autumn 2006, intime for the Times bfi50th London Film Festival.. Work starts at the beginning of January 2006 to revitalisethe existing National Film Theatre (NFT) building and to transform the spaceonce occupied by the Museum of the Moving Image.Amanda Nevill, Director of theBritish Film Institute, said: "This development is an important
  • China box office, production levels up in 2005

    China's box office grew by 30% to $248m (RMB2bn) in 2005, according tofigures announced on Wednesday by the Film Bureau of the State Administrationof Radio, Film and Television (SARFT). The growth is lower thanlast year when box office receipts increased by 50% to $186m (RMB1.5bn). Localfilms accounted for 55% of the total box office in 2004, and while market sharehasn't been announced yet, it's expected that local product
  • Crash makes history with civil rights award

    Lionsgate'sCrash has become the first filmto be honoured with the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights' (LCCR) 2006Hubert Humphrey Civil Rights Award."When I saw Crash I was deeplymoved not just by the powerful portrayal of the racial, ethnic and classtensions in our society, but because the characters and situations felt soreal," LCCR executive director Wade Henderson said."It is a powerful, gut-wrenching, full-frontal examination of race
  • Czech producers enter winter of content

    There's acertain cockiness in the Czech film industry at the moment. Maybe it's theholiday spirit or the professional-strength optimism that is required in thebusiness - but Prague is definitely feeling its oats.Don't call it a comeback, insiders caution. The dip in foreign orders during 2004 was,local producers say, a coincidence of shooting schedules and betrayed no lackof confidence on the part of producers in the Czechs' ability to deliver.Even before James Bonddefected to t
  • Depp, Winslet to narrate IMAX Deep Sea 3D

    Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet will jointly narrate and DannyElfman will score the IMAX and Warner Bros. giant-screen documentary DeepSea 3D.Set for release in IMAX cinemas on Mar 3, 2006, the film marks the secondoriginal giant-screen documentary for Warner Bros following the successfulrelease of NASCAR 3D, whichgrossed nearly $23m worldwide and was the second highest grossing documentaryreleased in North America in 2004.In a statement Warner Bros' domestic distri
  • Dutch film's local admissions up by almost 14%

    With 2.5million admissions for local features so far and the rest of December to go atthe box office, the Dutch films' box office for 2005 is up by at least 13.6%.In 2004, 2.2million tickets were sold for Dutch films in total. Children's and youth filmsform the most significant part of thegrowth with 2005 box office hits like Kameleon 2
  • EFM 2006 will be 50% larger than 2005

    EFM director Beki Probst revealed that due to the large demand fromsales companies, we decided at thelast moment to provide additional space'We have about 40 more EFM Business Suites on the fifthfloor of Potsdamer Str.11 (where the Berlinale GuestReception is housed) to give more companies achance of having a presence in theMarket. We are also thinking of installingflat screens in three rooms forpeople to have screening facilities.' She added that "th
  • European Film Market to open second 'spillover' site

    The European Film Market's move to a new venue - The Martin-Gropius-Bau - in February has been over-subscribed, resulting in a market 50 percent bigger than 2005 and prompting EFM organisers to open a 'spillover' venue for 40 companies.EFM director Beki Probst revealed that due to the large demand from sales companies, it has been decided atthe last minute to provide additional space for the Feburary 9-19 event. "We have about 40 more EFM Business Suites on the fifthfloor of Potsdamer Stra
  • Film bodies fear EU budget plans could damage MEDIA Programme

    Film industry bodies claim the European Union MEDIA Programme's work could be damaged by reductions in spending on culture after 2006.This weekend, the European Union (EU) member states, under the presidency of the UK, agreed a financial framework for the EU from 2007 to 2013.The European Producers Associations Alliance (EPAA) says the amount dedicated to culture is inadequate.A maximum of $625m (Euros 520m) has been set aside annually for the sectors of Culture, Youth, Audiovisual, Public
  • Fox launches division targeting teens and young adults

    Fox Filmed Entertainment (FFE) is targeting the teenand young adult crowd with a new division that will produce and acquire up toeight pictures a year.Fox Searchlight chief Peter Rice, who recently signed a new five-year-deal withFFE, will head up the as-yet-unnamed division.The plan is to focus on a genre mix and champion cutting edge filmmakers. Thecompany will also create a separate roster of new media c
  • Fun With Dick And Jane

    Dir: Dean Parisot. US. 2005. 89mins.For such a big star, Jim Carrey's career has featureda remarkably stark push-and-pull between appreciative audience reception andstubborn resistance to his whims. While his comedies as a leading man havetypically made a mint, more dramatic-minded turns in The Truman Show,
  • Kong gets bigger Christmas stocking at North American box office

    It was a closely fought battle but King Kong bested TheChronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe over theChristmas weekend to retain its North America crown.Despite new comedy openers headlining Jim Carrey, SteveMartin and Jennifer Aniston and the wide release of Sony's Memoirs Of AGeisha the fight for first only had two contenders from the outset.As the weekend raged on it was a close call. Friday saw KingKong take the early lead as
  • Kong, Narnia vie for international control

    King Kong is in pole position heading into the holiday weekendas impressive weekday business boosted last weekend's mighty $82.8m globallaunch to $113.5m.Universal's three-hour epic has no major releases scheduled through UIP thisweekend, however the picture's strong word of mouth should ensure solid holdsand be enough to fend off the considerable challenge of The Chronicles OfNarnia.That picture, released through Buena Vista International (BVI), has stormed offt
  • Korean film exports increase by 15%

    Korean film exportsincreased by 15% to $67m this year, according to a report from localinvestor/producer IM Pictures, with Japan a major buyer of star-powered Korean fare.The report states that 80%of sales were concentrated in Asia and estimates that overall investmentprofits were $17.4m, making 2005 the Korean industry's third year in the black.Major pre-sales went toJapan for tearjerker
  • Korea's MK Pictures signs second China deal

    Korea's MK Pictures has signed a deal to provide China's largest internet protocol TV (IPTV) serviceprovider, Zhejiang Huaying Media, with video-on-demand and pay-per-view content.Under the terms of the deal,MK Pictures will act as the company's exclusive agent for Korean films and willstart providing content from its in-house library following censorship revi
  • Local Christmas comedies top Italian box office

    On its opening weekend in Italy, King Kong paled in comparison to two local Christmas comedies,which stormed into the Italian box office, beating the giant ape into thirdplace. Filmauro's Christmas inMiami grossed a huge $3,659,566from 447 screens on its opening weekend, registering a massive screen averageof $8,148 per screen. The film has been hyped up as the last ever in a 20-yearfranchise of 24 bloc
  • Looking For Comedy In The Muslim World

    Dir/scr: Albert Brooks.2005. US. 98mins.The title LookingFor Comedy In The Muslim World is perhaps the bravest part of AlbertBrooks' new film, in which he plays himself, travelling to India and Pakistanon behalf of the US government to research what makes Hindus and Muslims laugh.Also brave was Brooks'decision for his feature to have
  • Miami launches Latin American showcase

    TheMiami International Film Festival (MIFF) will launch MIFF Abroad in March 2006,an annual Latin American cinema showcase that kicks off next year with Chile.Organised in association with the ChileanMinistry of Culture, the Consulate General of Chile in Miami, and emergingChilean producers including Cristina Littin and Ursula Budnik, MIFF Abroadcomprises two components.The first stage will be festival screenings inMarch, followed in April by a development scheme in which indu
  • Mother Of Mine wins IPA Golden Satellite Award

    Klaus Haro's Finnishforeign language Oscar submission Mother Of Mine boosted its impressive awards pedigree at theweekend by winning the International Press Academy's (IPA) Golden SatelliteAward.The picture chronicles a youngster's journey to Sweden to meet his new motherand stars Topi Majaniemi, Marjaana Maijala, Maria Lundqvist and MichaelNyqvist.Last week Mother Of Minev
  • Narnia claims international crown over holiday season

    Buena Vista International (BVI) was celebrating two foldthis weekend as Santa brought a sleigh full of international number ones for TheChronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe.Doubling its international territory count from 13 to 26 overthe Christmas weekend the family fantasy film brought a blow to King Kongas it took the international lead with $35.2m through Sunday. With December 26estimates it saw a $49m four-day holiday weekend as territories like
  • New Montreal FilmFest suffers digital conference blow

    The Festival International de Films de Montreal (FIFM) isabout to be the city's shortest-lived film festival.The unlucky event took another step toward oblivion yesterday with theannouncement that Digimart, its allied digital distribution conference, isabandoning the FIFM for a berth alongside the city's third festival, Festivaldu Nouveau Cinema (FNC), in October 2006.The FIFM (known in English as the New Montreal FilmFest) was launched inSeptember with Moritz De Hadeln as pro
  • Palm picks up Who Gets To Call It Art'

    Palm Pictures haspicked up North American and Caribbean rights to Peter Rosen's Who Gets ToCall It Art' and plans an early 2006release through its fledgling Arthouse Films DVD label.Head of acquisitions and production David Koh negotiated the deal for Palm andArthouse Films with David G Lubell of Propp Lubell & Lapidus on behalf ofRosen.Who Gets To Call It
  • Pride & Prejudice Leads London Critics nominations

    The London Critics Circlehas announced nominees for its annual film awards, with Pride & Prejudice leading the way with eight nominations. The Constant Gardener was close behindwith seven nominations. UIP was the UK distributor with the most nominations at 20 ahead ofPathe's 14.The winners will beannounced on Feb 9 at Lo
  • Report confirms difficult times for Irish film industry

    The Audiovisual Federation of Ireland's employer's lobbyIBEC has released its annual report for 2005, reviewing production andemployment statistics across the film and TV sectors in 2004 and givingestimates for 2005.Produced just as the new measures were being adopted in Britainthe foreword to the report by producer James Flynn of Octagon Films paints apessimistic future for UK/Ireland co-productions and advocates a streng
  • Screendaily wishes you a Happy Holidays

    We will be running a reduced service during the festive season until the New Year
  • Spanish Film Screenings at Lanzarote cancelled

    The Spanish Film Screenings of Lanzarote, a three-day mini-market for Spanish cinema heldevery winter in the Canary Islands, have been cancelledafter six editions.The Screenings drew anywhere from50 to 90 international buyers each winter to the Spanish archipelago off thenorthwest coast of Africa. After five years running inlate November and early December,
  • Spanish stars head home for new projects

    Spain's most exportable filmtalent, led by Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz,are going back to their roots for their most recent productions.Cruz has signed on to star oppositeAdrien Brody in English-language bullfighting biopic Manolete, whichbegins shooting on March 21 in Cordoba, Seville and Madrid.Meanwhile, Banderas began filming in his hometown of Malaga on Nov 21for his second film as a director, the Spanish-language
  • The Promise (Mo Gik)

    Dir/scr: Chen Kaige. China. 2005. 102 mins.Chen Kaige's first attemptat the Chinese adventure epic which has become a global box-office staple sinceAng Lee's CrouchingTiger, Hidden Dragon and Zhang Yimou's Hero and House Of FlyingDaggers is a
  • Toronto critics hail Cronenberg's History

    David Cronenberg's AHistory Of Violence won three prizesincluding Best Picture as the Toronto Film Critics Association (TFCA) unveiledits picks for 2005. Toronto-based Cronenberg wasnamed Best Director. while the film itself was deemed Best Canadian Film -despite the fact it was fully-financed by US studio New Line and does not qualifyas Canadian by any internationally-agreed standards. It's the second time in asmany weeks that History Of Violencehas been claimed b
  • Transamerica is a big hit internationally for ContentFilm

    ContentFilm PLC announced a raft of sales for its newest acquisition, Transamerica, whose star, FelicityHuffman, received the nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Dramatic Actress, as did Dolly Parton for Best Original Song.ContentFilm acquired the international distribution rights to the dramatic comedy(excluding North America) in April this year prior to the Tribeca FilmFestiv
  • Typhoon set to hit North America through DreamWorks

    CJ Entertainment has announced thatK.T. Kwak's $14.5m action blockbuster Typhoon is set to hit North America throughDreamWorks' distribution network, marking the first Korean film to go through amajor distributor in the US."At a time when Korean films aregaining popularity around the globe, we are very excited to be able to expandthe market of high quality films such as Typho
  • VOD release dates agreed by French film, TV and Internet providers

    Evokinga move towards "the responsible spreading of film," French culture minister Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres announced Tuesday the signing of a new accordbetween French film and television groups and Internet providers.Centeredaround video-on-demand (VOD), the signatories agreedto a 33 week window following a theatrical release before films becomeavailable. In the case of subscription-based VOD services, the filmsmu