02-07-2013

Nikitin Launches Film Biz Training SOFA

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Nikolaj Nikitin's program will focus on countries where there’s still a gap in the development of film institutions. Nikolaj Nikitin's program will focus on countries where there’s still a gap in the development of film institutions.

KARLOVY VARY: Berlinale film programmer Nikolaj Nikitin announced a new training programme for young industry professionals from CEE along with Germany, Central Asia, and the Caucasus, SOFA (School of Film Agents) which will hold its first workshop 19-30 August 2013 in Wroclaw.

Speaking with FNE, Nikitin said, “It’s a really new and original idea to train film agents – all the people who work in institutions.” Ten participants have been selected for the workshop, including eight from CEE, one from Germany, and one from the Caucasus region. The participants and their projects will be presented on 26 July in Wroclaw.

The programme is focused on countries where there’s still a gap in the development of film institutions, such as regional film funds, archives to preserve national cinema history, or film museums. Nikitin, who is the Artistic Director of the SOFA, said, “We’re going to train them on the business side. Often idealism is lost when there’s no business backbone.”

The goal of SOFA is to support innovative film and cinema projects while strengthening local film culture. Tutors for the programme include Renate Rose from European Film Promotion (www.efp-online.com), Romanian multi-hyphenate Tudor Giurgiu, Katriel Schory from the Israel Film Fund, and Claudia Dillmann from the German Film Institute, among others.

SOFA is partnered with New Horizons Association (www.nowehoryzonty.pl), the Polish Film Institute (www.pisf.pl) and the MEDIA Programme. Jan Naszewski of New Horizons Association told FNE it was a mutual decision to hold SOFA in Wroclaw where New Horizons holds its annual summer film festival, but outside of the festival’s dates (18-28 July 2013), in order to allow each of the events to maintain their own focus.

Nikitin, who added that he had been working on the project for the past couple of years, stressed that SOFA is not for directors or producers, but rather for those who act as agents for film.