TALLINN: Estonian Film Institute opened the first call for applications to the country’s new cash rebate fund FilmEstonia. The 600,000 EUR budget for the pilot year is set to grow to 2 m EUR in 2017.

The defining events for Estonia’s film industry in 2015 were: the decision to introduce a cash rebate scheme for incoming productions which will take effect in 2016, alongside two regional film funds, and a strong box office with domestic films walking proud.

TALLINN: The Estonian Film Institute today announced grants for six film projects that are designated for screening during the Republic of Estonia’s 100th anniversary in 2018.

TALINN: Estonia will launch a cash rebate fund for incoming productions in 2016. The government has just earmarked 0.5 m EUR for a pilot year, which will be increased to 1 m EUR by 2017 if the set targets are met.

TALLINN: Secret Society of Souptown by Margus Paju has beaten the all-time opening weekend record for Estonian children films, with over 17,000 admissions.

TALLINN: According to Statistics Estonia, in 2014 the country recorded the highest number of cinema admissions since the country’s restoration of independence in 1992. The overall number of tickets sold was 2.6 million, corresponding to nearly two per capita. The number of admissions has grown every year over the last 9 years.

TALLIN: The Baltic states' Forum Cinemas parent company Nordic Cinema Group has been acquired by UK-based private equity group Bridgepoint.

VIENTIANE: Oree Films embarks on Estonia's first ever co-production with Laos and France on the set of Dearest Sister, a supernatural drama set in Laos’ capital Vientiane. The film is budgeted at 300,000 euros and will be shot in late Spring 2015, with the release date set in 2016.

TALLINN: The US produced Spring by Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson shot to the top of iTunes horror genre list for a week. Spring's special effects were done in Estonia by FrostFX. The film also got up to Number 3 on iTunes in the romantic genre. This is the first time that a feature with Estonian creative participation has topped an iTunes list and indicates a new potentially lucrative distribution avenue for local fare.

TALLINN: Estonian Film Institute has announced the first round of this year’s minority coproduction grants. The grants total to 190,000 EUR out of the annual budget of 280,000 EUR and will go to four productions with minority Estonian stakes.