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Sarajevo Film Festival Launches Global Co-production Fund

In conjunction with its 20th anniversary, Sarajevo Film Festival launches a new co-production fund aimed at bringing the region's talent to the global arena.

Mirsad Purivatra, Director of Sarajevo Film Festival: "Since we started out during the siege of Sarajevo, we have spent the past 20 years developing a major international film festival, but also helping rebuild the film industry in our region. Through our co-production market CineLink we have assisted in taking the regional industry into the new European co-production landscape and building partnerships with the rest of Europe.Now with this in place, it's time to take the next step. With our region full of talent that's constantly being recognised internationally, and with Doha Film Institute, Mexican IMCINE, the Indian NFDC and other global partners already coming to Sarajevo, this is the next logical step. We're excited to see what the next 20 years will bring."

The fund will be open for feature film projects from former Yugoslav countries and the wider region that wish to co-produce with and have potential to raise funding in new markets outside the Eurimages/Creative Europe territories, as well as project from these territories seeking a partner in Southeast Europe. The Middle East, North Africa, the Americas, India and East Asia are intended as the primary geographical focus.  

The fund is looking to support production of up to 8 feature films, for which it has already secured a budget of 400 000 Euro in the next two years period. It will feature a Coproduction Scheme with up to 60.000 Euro per project in a form of a soft loan, and a P&A Scheme with up to 60.000 Euro per project in a form of a soft loan.
 
The main partners and funders are the European Commission’s Co-Production Fundsin the framework of the new Creative Europe MEDIA programme, and ATLANTIC Grupa, a major Croatian multinational consumer goods production and distribution company.

Jovan Marjanovic, Sarajevo Film Festival: "These two partnerships reflect our aim to ensure a mix of private and public funding. Film and culture are proven vectors of social and economic cohesion and development, and we see the objectives of this scheme also from that perspective. We strongly believe that the business sector has an important role in maintaining a competitive cultural sector."

Sarajevo Film Festival administers the Fund and the first call for applications is expected to be announced by the end of the year. The fund builds on the structure and experiences from Sarajevo City of Film, the festival's production support scheme that ran 2008-2013, investing a total of 350 000 euro in cash and services. Through its 25 short films involving 300 film workers from 12 different countries in Southeast Europe, a vast talent pool with an international perspective and experience of co-production has been created.

In 2013, the scheme was stirred towards support to feature films; including Bridges of Sarajevo, featuring contributions from European directors such as Ursula Meier, J.L. Godard, Aida Begic, Sergei Loznitsa, and Cristi Puiu, which premiered in Cannes.
 
The Sarajevo City of Film Fund is launched at Sarajevo Film Festival and during the festival representatives from other territories such as Doha Film Institute and IMCINE in Mexico will be present and share their insights on panels and in meeetings."

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