The Rome Film Fest's market event, The Business Street (October 18-21), was one of the inaugural festival's most popular and effective events. This year, it is attracting more than 300 international industry delegates, including Celluloid Dreams, The Match Factory and The Weinstein Company.
The event is gathering steam and has been roundly welcomed by the European industry. Loic Magneron of Paris-based Wide Management says: "I have the feeling Rome could be one of the main new markets for European buyers. I go to every market. Competition is tough, and broadcasters buy less and less independent cinema and it's very important to be able to meet other sales agents to discuss what's going on."
At Rome last year, Wide Management closed deals for Italian title The Orchestra Of Piazza Vittorio and French title Fissures.
"I'm concentrating on Rome's market, which gave good results in terms of sales last year," says Italian sales agent Adriana Chiesa. Last year Chiesa closed seven territories on Giuseppe Tornatore's The Unknown, which has gone on to sell in 74 territories and become Italy's foreign-language Oscar nomination. This year, Chiesa will hold the market debut of four titles in Rome including Riccardo Milani's Piano, Solo starring Kim Rossi Stuart, and three more titles from Venice and Toronto's official selections.
The Business Street is held in Rome's Hotel Bernini Bristol along Via Veneto. The market has a new video library as well as eight screening rooms below the hotel.
Managers Sylvain Auzou and Diamara Parodi have also confirmed the attendance of TFM, T^F1 International, Intercinema Russia, Spain's Alta Films, Sweden's AB Svensk Filmindustri, UK's Momentum Pictures, Japan's Asmik Ace Entertainment, South Korea's CJ Entertainment, and New Line from the US.
The Business Street director Giorgio Gosetti says there is an increase in international attendees in 2007 - 330 compared with 240 last year.
Wide Management's Magneron insists that despite a busy calendar, he is enthusiastic about the event. "You cannot work as a sales agent alone. You need to work with the support of the festival to be closer to distributors and to follow interesting projects."
Let's Say (On Dirait Que)
Dir: Francoise Maire
Int'l sales: Pyramide International, 33 (1)4296 0220.