STRASBOURG: The German/Austrian/Romanian coproduction Toni Erdmann directed by Maren Ade has been voted the winner of the prestigious LUX Prix by the European Parliament. The film was coproduced by Romania’s Hi Film Productions.

Maren Ade’s story about a father and daughter trying to reconnect in tragicomic circumstances was voted the winner by the European Parliament

The winner of the 2016 LUX Prize is Toni Erdmann by German director Maren Ade, a story about a father and daughter trying to reconnect in tragicomic circumstances, set against the backdrop of contemporary European society. Toni Erdmann prevailed over As I Open My Eyes by Leyla Bouzid and My Life as a Courgette by Claude Barras.

Screened in competition at Cannes, the winner of the FIPRESCI Grand Prix for best film of the year, and the German submission for the Oscars, the film reveals deep social and economic divides, as the heroine’s perception of what constitutes a fulfilling life is turned upside down.

The LUX Prize, which this year celebrates its tenth anniversary, promotes cultural and linguistic diversity, and has two specific objectives: to boost the circulation of European films and to spread the debate on major issues faced by today’s society. From the official selection of ten films, three are nominated, and the Members of the European Parliament then choose the final winner. The three nominated films travel through the EU member states during the LUX Film Days, and are translated into all 24 EU languages (check the event nearest to you here), while the winner is further promoted and adapted for the visually and hearing-impaired.

The day before the ceremony, a press seminar was held with two panel discussions, moderated by Doris Pack, the LUX Film Prize coordinator. The first one was called “Cinema at Stake in the Political Agenda: Implementation Report on Creative Europe”, and featured speakers Silvia Costa, Chair of the Committee on Culture and Education, and Bogdan Wenta, Member of the Committee on Culture and Education. The seminar was introduced by the First President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani: “Europe is not a Europe of currencies, or of the banks; it’s a Europe that is rediscovering the importance of its cultural identity,” he asserted. The speakers provided an insight into the ways Creative Europe has been supporting the cultural and creative industry in very diverse areas – from film to video games. They also stressed the importance of the programme for small countries and explained the way in which the new Guarantee Facility would enhance investment in the sector. Wenta stressed a few areas where improvement is needed – namely, audience development, and film circulation, translation and promotion. “We have to facilitate access for all citizens to European independent cinema,” said Costa.

Read more at www.luxprize.eu 

The LUX Film Prize awards ceremony will be held on 23 November in Strasbourg, and will include a press seminar, the screening of the three finalists competing for the award and the announcement of the winner by President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz.

The programme opened on Monday 21 November with the screening of the co-production between France, Tunisia, Belgium and the United Arab Emirates As I Open My Eyes, the first feature by young Tunisian director Leyla Bouzid, at 8 pm.

On Tuesday 22 November, there will be a press seminar at the Louise Weiss building at 2.30 pm and an introduction to the seminar, which will feature Antonio Tajani, First Vice-President of the European Parliament, and Juana Lahousse Juárez, Director General for Communication of the European Parliament. After this, there will be a conference entitled “Cinema at Stake in the Political Agenda: Implementation Report on Creative Europe, Audio-visual Media Service Directive Review”. It will feature LUX Film Prize coordinator Doris Pack, the Chair of the Committee on Culture and Education, Silvia Costa, and other members of the committee such as Bogdan Wenta; it will be followed by a Q&A session.

The second part of the seminar will take place on Tuesday 22, this time at 3.45 pm and entitled “What Is the Role of European Cinema and Authors in Today’s Society?” Moderated by Doris Pack, it will feature the directors of the three finalist films competing for the LUX Film Prize (Leyla Bouzid, the director of As I Open My Eyes; Maren Ade, the director of Toni Erdmann; and Claude Barras, the director of My Life as a Courgette), as well as Vice-Chairs of the Committee on Culture and Education Helga Trüpel, again featuring a Q&A session to bring the event to a close.

After a cocktail break at 6 pm, the Swiss-French animation My Life as a Courgette, which follows the orphan boy Zucchini, will be screened at 8 pm at the UGC Ciné Cité Strasbourg.

The last day of the LUX Film Prize ceremony will be Wednesday 23. At 11.45 am, the awards ceremony will take place in the plenary chamber. The winning film will be announced and the prize will be presented to the winning director by Martin Schulz.

After a press conference with MEPs and film directors at the Louise Weiss building at 2.30 pm, the German-Austrian-Romanian comedy Toni Erdmann by Maren Ade will be screened at the Cinéma Saint-Exupéry, thus bringing the three-day ceremony to a close.

The LUX Film Prize finalists will be showcased in 24 languages in the 28 member states of the European Union in order to disseminate European co-productions within the continent during this year’s edition of the LUX Film Days. The finalists are My Life as a Courgette by Claude BarrasToni Erdmann by Maren Ade and As I Open My Eyes by Leyla Bouzid. This European Parliament initiative will allow as many European citizens as possible to benefit from the diversity and richness of European cinema.

As I Open My Eyes (the first feature film by young Tunisian director Bouzid, which tells the story of Farrah, a young Tunisian girl and her struggle with the government as she sings highly critical songs with her rock band), My Life as a Courgette (a Swiss-French animated film that follows Zucchini, a little boy who finds himself alone at an orphanage after his mother’s death) and the German-Austrian- Romanian comedy Toni Erdmann (which sees a daughter reunite with her father in order to overcome their tricky relationship) will thus be the three finalists travelling through more than 50 European cities from November 2016 to January 2017.

The locations where these three features have been already and will be showcased are Austria (Vienna), the Netherlands (Leiden), Estonia (Tallinn), Sweden (Stockholm), France (Clermont-Ferrand, Paris and Marseille), Slovenia (Nova Gorica, Ljubljana, Krsko and Ptuj), Germany (Berlin, Essen and Munich), Italy (Salerno and Rome), the Slovak Republic (Bratislava), Finland (Helsinki, Tampere, Kuopio, Oulu, Abo and Joensuu), the UK (Leeds and Edinburgh), Romania (Cluj-Napoca, Bucharest and Targu Mures), Cyprus (Nicosia), Ireland (Dublin), Belgium (Brussels), Hungary (Budapest), Luxembourg (Luxembourg City), Spain (Barcelona and Madrid), Croatia (Zagreb), Latvia (Riga), Poland (Wroclaw and Warsaw), Lithuania (Vilnius, Kaunas and Panevezys), Portugal (Porto) and the Czech Republic (Brno). You can check out the agenda in its entirety here.

During the LUX Film Days, the LUX Film Prize will promote the active participation of the European audience by inviting those who watched the films in competition for the LUX Film Prize to take part in a vote for the Audience Mention. The winning film, as chosen by the audience, will then be announced and awarded the LUX Film Prize Audience Mention at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. Participants may also be selected to personally unveil the Audience Mention winner in July 2017.

TRIESTE: The First Cuts Lab training programme of When East Meets West is accepting submission from producer/director teams from CEE territories.

Josebe, age 88, lives in a retirement home in Chile, where she spends her days reminiscing about her youth in a small town in Spain's Basque Country. But her memory is becoming increasingly confused: she thinks she has only just arrived at the retirement home, and every day must learn again that it has been her home for nearly a year.

I'm not from here (Chile, Lithuania, Denmark), 26min, 2016 

Seventeen projects have been selected for the Co-Production Market, which will be taking place on 21-24 November at Industry@Tallinn &; Baltic Event during the Black Nights Film Festival. In other sections, Baltic Event highlights eight Baltic and Nordic projects in the script and pitch workshop POWR Baltic Stories Exchange and 20 projects in the Works in Progress and Screenings sections.

For its 15th jubilee edition, Baltic Event has selected 14 projects from its traditional region of the new EU territories, Scandinavia and Russia, a project from Georgia in collaboration with EAVE, and two projects from the 2016 Focus Country Luxembourg. The Baltic Event team is satisfied to note that not only was the quality of the record number of submissions exceptionally high, but the resultant slate also reflects the topics and emotions current in Europe and in the society in general today. While a number of projects revolve around the sore issue of immigration and controversies surrounding politics and religion, many stories simply deal with the isolation and loneliness of an individual in this ever globalising world. However, many filmmakers choose to approach their work in the key of humour, lending some lightness to the otherwise sombre topics.

While Miss Hanoi, the Czech project, deals with Vietnamese immigrants struggling to adopt Western norms, and Fear Eats the Soul from Sweden focuses on the still sadly occurring racism, East of Sweden from Finland and Trust from Poland follow refugees in more immediate danger. Continuing on a serious note, Norwegian As I Fall is a drama about a heroin-addict trying to come to terms with single fatherhood, Lithuanian People We Know Are Confused a cleverly woven multiplot about self-discovery and confidence, Russian Far Frontiers another stifling portrait of a person struggling in a strict and unforgiving environment, and Estonian Scandinavian Silence explores the relationship between siblings in a unique and innovative way. Moving onto the black comedies segment of the slate, What a Country! from Croatia tries to describe the state of mind of the Balkan countries by bringing in two dead presidents, Polish The Clergy teasingly depicts the “behind the scenes” life of the Catholic Church, the lead character of Romanian Emil is forced to face certain truths after being cheap on the funeral rites for his late wife, while Georgian Citizen Saint makes a sculpture of a saint come to life to prove a point and Latvian Insect Night makes a man able to walk on water. The slate is rounded up by two children’s films – the adaptation of the beloved children’s book Vinski and the Invisibility Powder from Finland, and Ibracadabra featuring the little fans of the famed footballer Zlatan Ibrahimovic from Sweden. Focus Country Luxembourg presents the dark thriller Skin Walker and (N)Ostalgia– a hybrid documentary about a struggling Soviet mining settlement.

As always, Baltic Event aims to find balance between established, award-winning directors, this year including Vinko Bresan (Croatia), Martti Helde (Estonia), Tinatin Kajrishvili (Georgia), Simo Halinen and Juha Wuolijoki (Finland), Laila Pakalnina (Latvia), Wojtek Smarzowski and Dariusz Gajewski (Poland), Andrei Gruzsniczki (Romania) and Karzan Kader (Sweden), and up-and-coming talents including Zdeněk Viktora (Czech Republic), Tomas Smulkis (Lithuania), Vicki Thornton and Chris Neuman (Luxembourg), Magnus Meyer Arnesen (Norway), Maxim Dashkin (Russia), and Maria Eriksson (Sweden).

A Eurimages Co-Production Development Award worth 20 000 Euro will be handed out by a jury consisting of Uldis Dimiševskis, Head of Production and Development, National Film Centre of Latvia, Latvia; Suzanne Glansborg, Executive Producer, TV4/Bonnier Broadcasting, Sweden; and Titus Kreyenberg, CEO/Producer, unafilm, Germany.

In addition, one project will receive the Screen International Best Pitch Award, offering coverage of the life-cycle of the winning film, and two producers will receive the Cannes Marché du Film Producers’ Network Award for Promising Young Producer with free accreditations to next year’s edition.

Baltic Event Co-Production Market selection 2016:

  1. As I Fall, producer Gyda Velvin Myklebust, DNF Masters, Norway, director Magnus Meyer Arnesen
  2. Citizen Saint, producer Lasha Khalvashi, Artizm, Georgia, director Tinatin Kajrishvili (in collaboration with EAVE – European Audiovisual Entrepreneurs)
  3. The Clergy, producer Jacek Rzehak, Profil Film, Poland, director Wojtek Smarzowski
  4. East of Sweden, producer Liisa Penttilä-Asikainen, Kaiho Republic, Finland, director Simo Halinen
  5. Emil, producer Oana Giurgiu, Hai Hui Entertainment, Romania, director Andrei Gruzsniczki
  6. Far Frontiers, producer Anna von Dziembowska, Victoria Films, Russia, director Maxim Dashkin
  7. Fear Eats the Soul, producer Emma Åkesdotter Ronge, Anagram Film & TV, Sweden, director Maria Eriksson
  8. Ibracadabra, producer Peter Krupenin, Hob AB, Sweden, director Karzan Kader
  9. Insect Night, producer Laila Pakalnina, Hargla Company, Latvia, director Laila Pakalnina
  10. Miss Hanoi, producer Zdeněk Viktora, Screenplay By s.r.o., Czech Republic, director Zdeněk Viktora
  11. People We Know Are Confused, producer Dagne Vildziunaite, Just A Moment, Lithuania, director Tomas Smulkis
  12. Scandinavian Silence, producer Elina Litvinova, Three Brothers, Estonia, director Martti Helde
  13. Trust, producer Kuba Kosma, Takfilm sp. z o.o., Poland, director Dariusz Gajewskie
  14. Vinski and the Invisibility Powder, producer Juha Wuolijoki, Snapper Films Oy, Finland, director Juha Wuolijoki
  15. What a Country!, producer Ivan Maloča, Interfilm, Croatia, director Vinko Bresan
  16. (N)ostalgia, producer Marion Guth, a_BAHN, Luxembourg, director Vicki Thornton
  17. Skin Walker, producer Jesus Gonzalez, Calach Films, Luxembourg, director Chris Neuman

POWR projects and screenwriters:

  1. Audnvin by Inger Dietrichs, Norway
  2. Children of Strauss by Carita Forsgren, Finland
  3. Deleted Scenes by Paula Korva, Finland
  4. For Anna by Toke Westmark Steensen, Denmark
  5. A Gift from the Moon by Ramin Pourmand, Estonia
  6. Good-Bye Soviet Union by Lauri Randla, Estonia
  7. The Hood by Andrius Lekavicius, Lithuania
  8. Scenes from a Dying Town by Kaisa El Ramly, Finland

Supporters and partners of Baltic Event are Creative Europe MEDIA Programme, Eurimages, Cultural Endowment of Estonia, Estonian Film Institute, Lithuanian Film Center, National Film Centre of Latvia, Finnish Film Foundation, Film Fund Luxembourg, Film Commission Poland, Swedish Institute, Embassy of Sweden in Estonia, FilmVäst, Danish Cultural Institute in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival, Nordic Hotel Forum, Tallink Hotels, EAVE, Cannes Marche du Film’s Producers’ Network, Torino Film Lab, Screen International, Film New Europe, Orbital Vox Studios and Apollo Music.

Additional information:
Marge Liiske
Managing Director
+372 514 8134
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http://be.poff.ee

WARSAW: SPI’s Kino Polska reported revenues of 82.7 PLN, a 4% increase, at the end of the third quarter of 2016, and profit of 14.7 m PLN. The results are the company’s best in three years. The company’s stock rose nearly 1%, to 12.30 PLN.

First Cut Lab is a training programme designed for 3 long feature fiction films in editing phasefrom Eastern Europe and Italy. Selected producer/director teams will receive tailor-made advice from a consulting editor (Benjamin Mirguet) and expert feedback from top international film professionals (creative producers, festival programmers, sales agents, etc). The main goal is to foster the artistic potential of the selected rough cuts and, at the same time, to increase the sales, festival and circulation potential of the completed films. FCL will take place in Trieste on January 21-24, 2017 and will be led by Matthieu Darras and Alex Traila.

All applications must include video material not less than 60 minutes long.

Looking forward  to receiving the application until December 5, 2016.

More information on the submission process and the event are available at www.wemw.it

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A new online cinema space is to be launched in 2017, bringing together some of the best films from the fast growing and dynamic cinema of the Baltic countries of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

Baltic View will feature significant and exciting work from across the region, and will often be the only place where they can be legally seen online.

The subscription service will be curated by a selected group of experts, including critics, festival programmers and cinemas.

In the first year, subscribers will be able to see 25 films in five categories: Youth, Portrait, Freedom, Family Ties, and Old Classics.

As part of the commitment to promote films and film-makers across Europe, the online service will run alongside other activities, including cinema screenings in capital cities, beginning with London and Edinburgh. Special events will also be launched during film festivals.

The combination of a great online service and big screen is expected to provide a major boost for the film industries of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. National Film Centres from all three countries are already committed to supporting and promoting the service.

Baltic View was initiated by international film production and distribution company “Kinomind Films” with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania.

Baltic View has also benefited from an exclusive training programme in Wroclaw, Poland, organised by SOFA (School of Film Agents) for cultural managers and attended by founder Inesa Ivanova.
Demand for Baltic films can be seen at festival screenings across Europe and worldwide, where Baltic films have enjoyed success at A-list festivals.

“The buzz around film has generated demand among ex-pat communities around the world and they are expected to be among the most enthusiastic users. We also hope to attract other cinephiles, curious about the talent and high-quality work emerging in the Baltic countries,” said Ivanova.

In September, the project was presented at Riga IFF and in November at Minsk IFF “Listapad”, and it will be introduced to the industry at Baltic Event in Tallinn on 21st November.

About Kinomind Films

Kinomind Films is a dynamic multinational production and distribution company with bases in Vilnius, London and Toronto. The company creates Film, TV and Digital Media for a global audience with some of the world’s brightest talent across live action, animation and documentary. Kinomind Films have 20 short films and 5 feature length documentaries under their belt. One of the main projects currently in development is “Happy Go Hopscotch” – educational TV series for pre-school children.

Contacts: London – Inesa Ivanova, Head of Business Development, Mobile +44 7881 553087; Vilnius - Gabija Budreckyte, Head of Distribution, Mobile +370 6221 9180; E- mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.