Montreal’s Fantasia International Film Festival has announced details of a new international co-production and contents market that will launch at the 16th edition in July 2012.

Under the banner of Frontieres, the co-production market will run from July 26-29 during the three weeks of the festival. (July 19-August 7).

Twelve projects will be selected by filmmakers hailing from Canada, the United States, Australia, Scandinavia and other European nations with access to production subsidies. Projects may be submitted in either English or French.

Market director Stephanie Trepanier explained the thinking behind the target countries: “These countries have increased their co-productions with Canada in recent years, some through treaties. Aside from the US they all have country and/or region-specific production grants. It’s fertile ground for new co-production initiatives.”

With a early deadline of January 9, selected projects will be presented to international producers, sales agents and distributors. “The projects we’ll support will connect with Fantasia’s vision of genre films, meaning not just thrillers, crime, horror and fantasy/sci-fi, but also action, animation, comedies and even dramas with an edge,” said Trepanier.

Launched in 1996, Fantasia is considered one of the foremost “fantastic film festivals” of a growing number that also includes Stiges and Austin Fantastic Fest.

Following the initiatives of mainstream film festivals, such events have recently launched project markets to develop new genre content. Fantasia’s Frontieres marks the first in North America following Korea’s Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival, focusing on Asia, and Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival, aimed at Eastern-Europe, Scandinavia, the Balkans and Russia.

In addition to the co-production market, the Fantasia Film Market launches during the same dates to support sales for titles screening at the festival. The market builds on the formal industry accreditation system and rights holder information database introduced last year.

“Fantasia has always been tremendously popular with its local audience and we’ve happily seen its industry presence grow over the years. The launch of a film market is a natural step in the long-term vision we have for our event,” stated Fantasia president Pierre Corbeil.