Berlin jury member Lissy Bellaiche, who headed up the Danish Film Institute's festival department for 19 years until last autumn, is moving to Trust Films Sales, the international sales outfit controlled by Danish production company Zentropa.
In her new role, Bellaiche will aim to ensure that Trust's growing slate of Danish and foreign films are present at film festivals around the world. The move again puts Zentropa ahead of domestic competitors, as it is the first Danish company to hire a contact dealing exclusively with festival promotion.
'We'll be able to catch even more titles for Trust through Lissy Bellaiche's extensive network of contacts,' said Zentropa producer and co-founder Peter Aalbaek Jensen commenting on the appointment. 'We're even saving money in hiring her as it would take at least 10 years for someone else to learn what she already knows.'
At last year's Berlin Film Festival, Bellaiche was successful in moving the third Dogme movie Mifune to an earlier screening slot, which improved its position in the competition and on the market.
Danish Film Institute production and development chief Thomas Stenderup said he welcomed the move as it followed the Institute's strategy of leaving more festival activity to production and sales companies. The Institute plans to focus instead on the major festivals and may introduce a new kind of support for the sale of Danish features on the international market.