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Ile-de-France out in force at Filmart

Companies attending include Bayoo, which has worked on films including Jackie Chan’s Chinese Zodiac.

The Ile-de-France Film Commission, a key support for international film and television productions shooting in Paris and the surrounding region, is out in force at Filmart.

“We want to consolidate existing relationships and connect with new directors and producers,“ says the commission’s CEO Olivier-René Veillon. 

The commission is bringing eight Ile-de-France-based companies to the market, comprising line producer Bayoo, post-production outfits Knightworks and Kode Agency, production houses Paramax Films, Swan & Les Films du Cygne and Zorba Production, new media company Under the Milky Way and Paris-based talent agency ECI which also has offices in Beijing and Los Angeles.

Bayoo is a key reference for Chinese companies filming in France while Zorba Productions is co-producing Song Chuan’s Ciao Ciao with Chinese production company Sou Yu Films.  The project will be presented at Cannes’ L’Atelier co-production market in May.

France, and in particular Paris, is becoming an increasingly popular destination for Asian productions as Chinese companies in particular up their production budgets and ambitions, says Veillon.

Recent productions to shoot recently in the Ile-de-France region include Hunan TV’s Flowers and Mists and Jackie Chan’s box office hit Chinese Zodiac which stopped off in Paris and the Château of Chantilly, an hour outside the capital, where the director filmed a spectacular roof scene. All three productions were line produced by Bayoo.

Hong Kong channel TVB’s Triumph in the Skies 2, Taiwanese Flash Forward Entertainment TV film Cordon Bleu and Korean Eun Jin Bang’s feature Way Back Home also shot in the region.

“Asian productions of course come to the Paris and surrounding areas for the monuments and famous backdrops but beyond that they are increasingly using our post-production facilities too,” says Veillon.

“There is a generation of Chinese filmmakers who were very influenced by the aesthetics of Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s Amélie, for example, and have great admiration for our post-production facilities,” he continues.

Wong Kar-Wai has been using French post-production houses since his film 2046, notes Veillon, most recently doing part of the post-production for The Grandmaster at Paris-based BUF.

Aside from networking, the commission is also organising a conference on Monday at 14.30 looking at “new incentives and financing opportunities for international productions in France,” featuring Veillon, Bayoo associate manager Yve Cresson and French Consulate to Hong Kong Arnaud Barthélémy on the panel. 

The presentation will focus in particular on recent changes to France’s Tax Rebate for International Production (TRIP) offering a 20% rebate on French costs to foreign shoots spending at least one million euros in France.

Under new rules, the relief ceiling has been increased to $12.9m (€10m) from $5.1m (€4m) and eligible costs expanded to include accommodation.  

Asian productions to have benefitted from the TRIP in the past include Chinese Zodiac and The Grandmaster.

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