The Les Arcs Film Festival, running Dec 14-21 in the French Alps, has announced a new €10,000 ($11,153) prize aimed at encouraging features exploring ecological issues and with a story element linked to a mountainous region.
“Worried about our environmental impact, we have been off-setting our carbon footprint since our first edition in 2009,” the festival said in a statement.
“We want to change the way we do this from 2020, to be closer to the objectives of the festival,” it continued. ”From 2020, our carbon offset will be used to finance a fund aimed at encouraging the development of films looking at the future of our planet and our mountains.”
The festival said the initiative had been sparked by the fact that very few fiction features look at ecological issues and that it was area explored mainly in the documentary format.
The festival said the winning project could have a storyline linked to any mountainous area, although a connection with the French Alps would be a bonus factor.
As well as the €10,000 prize the winning project will be invited to participate in the festival’s Co-production Village platform, which showcases some 20 European projects in development every year to help them find producer and sales agent partners.
A call for projects will be launched next year.
The award is also supported by regional film fund Auvergne Rhône Alpes Cinéma and ADS, the company which manages the Les Arcs skiing domain.
The new prize, which will kick off in 2020, was announced as part of the festival’s inaugural Cinema Green Lab. The initiative was launched this year with the aim of helping film professionals embrace more ecologically friendly working practices across the whole cinema chain, from production to exhibition. Its first edition included panels on incentives encouraging sustainable productions and what filmmakers can do to encourage people to look after the planet through their films.