The expanded co-production lab will focus on eight South Asian countries over the next three years.

Locarno Open Doors 2016

At this year’s Locarno Film Festival (August 3-13) the co-production initiative Open Doors will support eight projects and eight emerging producers from South Asia, who will connect with potential European and international partners.

This marks the first of a three-year focus on professional talent from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

The eight projects selected for the Open Doors Hub are:

  • Cinema, City and Cats by Ishtiaque Zico, Bangladesh
  • Craving (Ta Ku Tha Lo Chin Thee) by Maung Okkar, Myanmar
  • Day After Tomorrow by Kamar Ahmad Simon, Bangladesh
  • House Of My Fathers by Suba Sivakumaran, Sri Lanka
  • Season Of Dragonflies (Jhyalincha) by Abinash Bikram Shah, Nepal
  • The Cineaste by Aboozar Amini, Afghanistan
  • The Red Phallus by Tashi Gyeltshen, Bhutan
  • Then They Would be Gone (Mela Chaar Dinan Da) by Maheen Zia, Pakistan

At the end of the four day networking event, the Open Doors jury will announce awards including a prize worth $52,000 (50,000 CHF) funded by the Swiss production support fund Visions Sud Est, the SDC and the City of Bellinzona.

France’s CNC (Centre National du Cinéma et de L’image Animée) will offer a grant worth $9,000 (€8,000) and ARTE will offer a prize worth $6,800 (€6,000).

For the expanded 14th edition, to be held August 4–9 , Open Doors will support a further eight emerging producers, via the new Open Doors Labs.

The participating producers are:

  • Aadnan Imtiaz Ahmed, Kino-Eye Films, Bangladesh
  • Abu Shahed Emon, Batayan Productions, Bangladesh
  • Rubaiyat Hossain, Khona Talkies, Bangladesh
  • Jigme Lhendhup, Evolving Artists, Bhutan
  • We Ra Aung, Green Age Film Production, Myanmar
  • Thu Thu Shein, Third Floor Production, Myanmar
  • Wang Shin Hong, Myanmar Montage Productions, Myanmar
  • Min Bahadur Bham, Shooney Films Pvt. Ltd., Nepal

The section will also include the Open Doors Screenings, which will see a selection of as-yet unannounced shorts and features from the national cinemas of the participating countries presented to the Locarno audience.

Open Doors aims to support and highlight filmmakers and films from countries in the South and East where independent cinema is vulnerable. It has been supported since its inception by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).

Additional support comes from ACE (Ateliers du Cinéma Européen), EAVE (European Audiovisual Entrepreneurs), Producers Network Marché du Film (Cannes Festival), TorinoFilmLab, Festival Scope, Clinik.Kathmandu, MEMORY! International Film Heritage Festival, Yangon Film School and Bhutan Film Trust. 

Carlo Chatrian, Locarno’s artistic director, commented: “This initial selection of projects from South Asia shows the diversity and energy of a region with major potential. This is the first stage in a work of exploration and support that will continue over three years.”