The St Petersburg-based P.O.V. Development Fund has been launched with a budget of $130,000 (€100,000) to encourage international co-productions with Russian producers attached as lead or delegate producers.

A selection committee of Russian producers Sergei Selyanov (STV), Artem Vasiliev (Metrafilms), Berlin-based sales agent Jean-Christophe Simon (Films Boutique), Baltic Film Event coordinator Riina Sildos, and Jani Thiltges, head of studies at Luxembourg-based EAVE will choose four to five projects to be allocated development funding in the form of interest-free loans.

The private fund is intended to help develop the film industry infrastructure in St Petersburg, promote the city as a cinematographic hub at home and abroad, and prevent a “brain drain” of film-making talent to the capital further south. 

The grants, which are aimed at projects of “high artistic value” and “with strong distrbution potential or global festival potential”, are repayable on the first day of principal photography.

The recipients of the first grants will be announced at the first Northern Seas Film Forum between September 13-15 during the St Petersburg International Film Festival.

The Film Forum will include a pitching session of co-production projects from countries bordering the North Sea, Baltic Sea as well as France, and a showcase of projects from the Netherlands selected by the Holland Film Meeting.

In addition, the first of 2013’s Baltic Bridge East by West (B’Est) workshops, organised by the Baltic Event, RFilms and STV in cooperation with MEDIA Mundus and EAVE, will be held during the Film Forum.

Pitching sessions in Moscow and Vologda

While this year’s Moscow Business Square and its Co-Production Forum come to an end today (June 26), the Moscow film festival will provide an additional forum tomorrow where feature film and short film projects by first-time film-makers can be presented.

The final line-up of projects were chosen by selection committees manned by industry figures such as Glavkino’s general director Ilya Kachurin, Kinotavr’s pitching coordinator Anna Gudkova, and producers Natalia Mokritsky and Sergei Selyanov.

Meanwhile, Dutch and Russian producers will come together to meet and exchange experiences and discuss new projects at the 4th edition of Vologda’s VOICES film festival (5-9 July), which is dedicated to young independent European cinema.

Producers San Fu Maltha and Ruud van der Heyde, director Jos Stelling and Signe Zeilich-Jensen, head of industry at the Holland Film Meeting, are expected to attend a co-production meeting at the festival which has a focus on Dutch cinema this year as part of the current Russian-Dutch Year of Culture.

Consequently, VOICES will open on July 5 with Stelling’s The Girl And  Death and has a competition section with ten titles including the Russian premieres of In Bloom, Berberian Sound Studio, Insensibles, A Caretaker’s Tale and The Resurrection Of a Bastard.

In addition, there will be screenings of such European films as Holy Motors, Parade and Taboo, showcases of new Russian films as well as features from the UK and Ireland, and masterclasses by Stelling and Russian documentary film-maker Maria Razbezhkina.