Kazakhstan’s Eurasia International Film Festival is launching a co-production event, Spotlight: New Kazakh Cinema, at this year’s edition of the festival in Almaty (Sep 19-24).

Eight projects have been selected and will be presented at an open pitching session on September 22. A panel of international experts will determine which project has the most potential for co-production with Europe and for international distribution.

The winning project will receive support from JSC Kazakhfilm, which is also supporting the co-production event, and help with European promotion. The award will be presented at the closing ceremony of the Eurasia film festival. The event will also features round tables, presentations and one-on-one meetings.

The event is headed by Russian producer Anna Katchko (Newsmakers, Myn Bala) who is also artistic director of Moscow Business Square, which runs during the Moscow International Film Festival.

“Today, Europe takes a great interest in a fast development of Kazakhstan’s cinema industry.  Co-production helps to get to the new level in the European cinema community. Therefore, I am glad to facilitate bringing industry experts to Almaty. This helps them to get better understanding of the culture, opportunities and talents of this high-potential country,” Katchko said.

Among the companies and organisations attend the event are France’s CNC, Wild Bunch and Rezo Films, the Locarno and Tribeca film festivals and Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg.  

Kazakhfilm president Ermek Amanshaev said: “The purpose of Spotlight: New Kazakh Cinema is to open new horizons for our filmmakers, and I hope, this event will be positive in overall development of Kazakhstan’s cinema and become an important and effective part of the Eurasia Film Festival.”

The selected projects are:

Harmony Lessons – Emir Baigazin

On The Way Home – Talgat Bektursunov

Ferryman – Elmira Gilman

The Fierce Horse Rustlers – Adilkhan Erzhanov

On The Border – Akhat Ibraev

Behind The Wall – Elena Lisasina

Earthquake – Gaziz Nasyrov

The Immigrant Girl – Nariman Turebayev