Among the changes are a market infrastructure and a cut in the number of films in official selection.

The Venice Film Festival’s new artistic director Alberto Barbera has already instituted key changes for the 69th festival (Aug 29 to Sept 8).

Barbera told Screen in Cannes this week that a market infrastructure has been put in place under Pascal Diot for the festival’s official market which will run Aug 30 to Sept 3 with a base on the first floor of the Excelsior Hotel. Up to 120 buyers will be flown in for the market for four nights apiece to boost business at Venice while a digital video library with up to 45 stations will offer screening facilities.

Barbera is also cutting the number of films in the official selection to a maximum of 18 films in competition, 18 films in Orizzonti, 12-15 films in out of competition or special screening slots and 20-25 restored or classic titles. This year restorations of eight films which have played through the first 80 years of Venice history will be screened. (While the festival is celebrating its 69th edition, it started in 1932.) Barbera will make the programme announcement on July 26.

Meanwhile Barbera, who built up the Torino Film Lab while head of the National Cinema Museum in Turin, is working with Film Lab director Savina Neirotti on a project for year-round film talent and project development activities in Venice. The Venice lab will select 15 projects by a new director and a young producer (with at least two filmsproduced) for a three-week workshop in January, at the end of which three projects will be invited to a second development stage and given €150,000 each to shoot their films with a deadline for completion by the festival in August.