Murayama’s Banapara also gets development award.

The Tokyo film festival’s 8th TIFFCOM content market wrapped with a development prize of $6,600 (JPY500,000) going to director Kyoko Miyake’s Japanese-German feature documentary Beyond The Wave in the TIFFCOM Project Market’s New Talent section.

Co-produced by Berlin-based Inselfilm Produktion, Beyond The Wave focuses on the struggle of survivors in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster. The project previously received support from Germany’s Medienboard development fund and European project markets.

In the concurrent Creative Market Tokyo (CMT) event, producer Tai Murayama’s Banapara comedy animation project received another development prize of $6,600 (JPY500,000). While a feature film is also in development, these particular funds will go toward production of a smartphone app centered around characters in tropical Okinawa.

The project previously received support from the Okinawa contents fund. In an effort to consolidate events this year, the CMT event focusing on brand, character and digital contents licensing was moved from its usual early-October slot in Tokyo’s Odaiba district to run directly after TIFFCOM in Roppongi Hills, running Oct 27-28.

Both development prizes will be furnished in the form of reimbursements upon project completion.

“We need to take care of single independent filmmakers,” said TIFF and TIFFCOM chairman Tom Yoda, speaking about TIFFCOM’s project market.

“Japan is the second largest film-consuming country in the world after the US. The proportion of domestic to foreign business this year looks like it will be about 50:50. That is why TIFFCOM is so strong. The increase in registered buyers and exhibitors is due to the synergy effects of TIFF and TIFFCOM,” he said.

Sales stands opened Oct 24-26, with the TIFFCOM Project Market running Oct 26-27. As previously reported, TIFFCOM saw a 12% increase on buyer numbers with 800 registered this year. The market had 226 exhibitors from 20 countries and regions compared to 222 from 21 last year. Companies from Greece and Namibia participated for the first time this year. National umbrella stands included record-size ones from the UK, Canada and Korea. In view of the massive drop in tourism (still around 30% down) and the high yen, TIFFCOM saw a relatively good turnout in line with last year’s.

TIFFCOM saw several market premieres including Joint Entertainment’s latest pick-ups Bear It, directed by Cheng Fen Fen, whose Hear Me was Taiwan’s biggest local box office hit in 2009, and Home In Two Cities, part of a series of documentaries on famous Chinese writers which will also be screening in the San Francisco International Film Festival. Other market premieres included Kadokawa Shoten’s The Woodsman And The Rain and Beijing Film Market’s I Phone You.

Meanwhile, chairman Yoda also announced that TIFF’s Arigato Project fund, raised for victims of the March 11 East Japan earthquake and tsunami, would also be allocating funds for humanitarian relief in Turkey in the wake of the earthquake that happened on Oct 23.