They act as agents to the industry and as ambassadors to the audience. Regardless of how film agents are introduced, their aim is one: bringing film and audience together.
Turning an idea into a film is a long way and even longer to reach an audience. Who is following that road? Directors, screenwriters, producers, actors, sound engineers and many more. But what makes their work possible at all? And, how does the film eventually reach not only great festivals but, most importantly, the viewer? This is a specialty of film agents, the participants of the SOFA workshop.
SOFA exactly stands for- a professional workshop for up-and-coming film professionals who support, finance and promote film culture in the country of their origin- creating a dialogue between the film industry and the audience- turning ideas into innovative projects- providing consultations with professionals- establishing international cooperation- helping in finding financial support for projects’ development and implementation
For all above reasons SOFA – School of Film Agents has established a tailor-made workshop for “agents“ – the ambassadors of film culture. It is this year being held from August 27 to September 1 for the 5thtime (and for the 1st time in Polish capital Warsaw).
Who are this year’s participants and what kind of projects do they bring with them?
* Agnieszka Sękowska, Poland → Producer’s MAP (Mentoring Action Plan)A mentorship programme dedicated to emerging producers that guides them through film festivals and trainings fitted to their career profile and projects.
* Nikolai Lavreniuk, Belarus → Belarusian Film Promotion CentrePromotion Centre that empowers the Belarusian film industry and makes it more visible on the global cinema map.
* Liina Maria Lepik, Estonia → Tallinn Film WonderlandInitiated by the Estonian producers, film hub with region’s biggest studio complex situated on the territory of a historical cotton factory.
* Nino Chichua, Georgia → Film/TV Production Cost Calculator for GeorgiaAn online tool for international producers that estimates budgets when considering filming in Georgia.
* Angelos Tsaousis, Greece → DocRepublicA documentary film centre that aims at creating platform for expressing ideas, initiating public dialogue and making social changes through film.
* Gitit Wainer, Israel → Cine-Reflection – Films as a Reflection of LifeA first Israeli project presented at SOFAorganizes educating film programmes for the local youth.
* Tara Karajica, Serbia → Fade to Her – Center for Women in FilmCreating an institution that focuses on supporting women in the Serbian film industry.
5thSOFA workshop in 2017 and 2018
The workshop will consist of two parts. The first one will be held in Warsaw, Poland between 27 August and 1 September 2017. The second one in Tbilisi, Georgia (22 – 28 April 2018). Being assisted by experienced film industry professionals the participants will focus in Warsaw on developing their projects that give structural support to the local film industry. The period between Warsaw and Tbilisi will be dedicated to implementing gained knowledge and experience into action. The final part in Georgia will concentrate on follow-ups as well as on lectures on aspects of financing and promotion.
The list of participants and their projects were announced by SOFA director Nikolaj Nikitin featuring Tara Karajica (this year’s SOFA participant from Serbia) assisted by SOFA’s Greece advisor Amanda Livanou, SOFA’s friend Katrin Kissa from Tallinn at Miroslav Mogorović’s (producer, programme director of the European Film Festival Palić and SOFA mentor) European Film Festival Palić on 20 July 2017.
SOFA – School of Film Agents is a joint project of Filmplus gUG (Cologne), Institute for Democratic Changes (Tbilisi) and Takes Film (Tbilisi), funded by German Federal Foreign Office and Creative Europe – MEDIA Programme of the European Union. The 2017 Georgian workshop was funded also by Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection of Georgia, Tbilisi City Hall, Georgia National Film Centre and Film in Georgia. The 2017 Polish workshop will be also funded by: Polish Film Institute, Foundation of Polish-German Cooperation and Mazovia Warsaw Film Commission. The organisers wish to thank also the other partners: Meeting Point Vilnius, Karlovy Vary IFF, European Film Festival Palić, Goethe-Institut, Mozinet, EAVE and Israel Film Fund.
SOFA School of Film Agents, Nikolaj Nikitin, c/o Filmplus gUG, Venloer Straße 214, 50823 Köln, Germany