Transilvania International Film Festival

Source: Nicu Cherciu / TIFF

Transilvania International Film Festival

Romania’s Transilvania International Film Festival (TIFF) is to expand its industry platform in an effort to address challenges facing the film sector and will introduce a new pilot TV programme.

The industry days will take place from July 23 to August 1, parallel to TIFF’s 20th anniversary edition, as a hybrid of online and physical events.

The already established Transilvania Pitch Stop (TPS) will be restructured and expanded in a bid to better fit the needs of filmmakers, producers, distributors and exhibitors. It will continue to focus on projects in development from first and second time directors from Romania, Russia, Greece and beyond, with a focus on helping projects boost their audience potential.

TPS, which includes a public pitch to potential partners and financiers, has developed more than 70 projects since its launch in 2014, including Christos Nikou’s Apples, which opened Venice Horizons in 2020 and was Greece’s submission for this year’s Oscars.

A new programme named TPS Stream will be the industry platform’s first step into drama series produced for TV and online. The initiative will aim to encourage the writers’ room co-creation approach for series, using existing talent and resources in the Central and Eastern European film industry.

The Transilvania Talent Lab (TTL), dedicated to Romanian exhibitors and distributors, will also extend its scope, offering mentoring to participants that are facing challenges on a local level within the wider global changes to the film sector.

The newest addition to the platform is First Cut Lab Cluj, a specialised workshop for feature-length fiction films in the editing phase, which will focus on films from Romania and Moldova. Directors, producers and editors will receive feedback and advice on their cuts from international film industry experts, in an effort to enhance the audience opportunities for their films. Applications will open in early May.

“The whole film industry is at a point of major change and we need to address that, we need to invest in the business culture of our professionals for a sustainable industry,” said TIFF festival president Tudor Giurgiu.

“From filmmakers to distributors and exhibitors, we all need to get together and find ways to adapt to the fast changing environment. Our industry platform will reflect that.”

The industry platform will be overseen by Alex Traila.

This year’s TIFF will be held as an outdoor event, two months later than its traditional slot in the calendar, due to the pandemic. Cinemas in the Romanian capital of Bucharest were cleared to reopen at 30% of their capacity on January 25, as the coronavirus infection rate has dropped. Cinemas had been closed since October.