European Film Market & Co-Production Market

May 20, 2023
European Film Market Presents Italy as “Country in Focus” 2024

Nicola Borrelli, Roberto Stabile, Mariëtte Rissenbeek, Dennis Ruh

After the successful return of the European Film Market (EFM) in February 2023 with record numbers of 11,500 plus trade visitors, more than 600 exhibiting companies and over 1,500 market screenings, the EFM is now announcing its guest country for the upcoming edition. “Country in Focus” 2024 will be Italy.

The EFM's “Country in Focus” programme was launched in 2017, but due to the pandemic, the EFM 2021 and 2022 took place in exceptional formats whereby the focus section was suspended. In 2024, Mexico, Canada, Norway, Chile and this year’s Baltic countries Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania will be followed by Italy in this role.

“Italy in Focus” will highlight the work of Italian filmmakers from different perspectives and offer an opportunity to network with producers, distributors, investors and experts.

On May 20, the official agreement was signed in the professional space of the Italian Pavilion - created by Cinecittà within the 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival - by Berlinale Managing Director Mariëtte Rissenbeek and Roberto Stabile, Head of Special Projects of the Directorate General for Cinema and Audiovisual of the Ministry of Culture (DGCA-MiC) at Cinecittà. EFM Director Dennis Ruh and Nicola Borrelli, Director General of the Directorate General for Cinema and Audiovisual of Italy’s Ministry of Culture (MiC), also attended the signing ceremony and press conference.

“Italy as a film nation with outstanding filmmakers has enriched the Berlinale for a great many years. Honorary Golden Bears for lifetime achievement have been awarded to Sophia Loren, Claudia Cardinale, Francesco Rosi and Milena Canonero, among others. Numerous Italian filmmakers have premiered their films at the Berlinale, joining a long, continuing list of Italian guests. Most recently, in 2016, the Golden Bear for Best Film went to Italy: Fire at Sea by Gianfranco Rosi. I am delighted that Italy will now also take a place of honour at the European Film Market and that we will be able to get to know the diversity of the Italian film industry even better in the coming edition,” says Mariëtte Rissenbeek, managing director of the Berlinale.

In the words of EFM Director Dennis Ruh: “The Italian film and media industry is a permanent fixture at the EFM. This year alone we had over 1,000 accredited participants from Italy, as well as over 60 exhibiting Italian companies, and almost 80 films in market screenings. This puts Italy in one of the leading positions. In 2024, we will be taking a closer look at this exciting, traditional as well as modern and diverse production and distribution country, and thus expand the opportunities for cooperation.”

“It will be an important moment to turn the spotlight on our industry in a period of great change and growth,” says Roberto Stabile, Head of Special Projects of the Directorate General for Cinema and Audiovisual of the Ministry of Culture (DGCA-MiC) at Cinecittà. “It will also be a key opportunity to reinforce relations with our foreign partners and to illustrate to them all the measures available for the internationalisation of our industry. These measures aim to promote Italy as an ideal location to shoot audiovisual products, thanks to the beauty of the territory and national and regional funds, but also as a reliable and prestigious partner to co-produce and provide content, thanks to the Film Distribution Fund, recently renewed and strengthened.”

“In a period of important growth of the Italian national audiovisual industry on foreign markets, the Directorate General for Cinema and Audiovisual of the Italian Ministry of Culture strongly wanted and supported the realisation of this initiative in such an essential market as Berlin,” added Nicola Borrelli. “We’re currently reviewing and enhancing all the measures supporting Italian audiovisual exports. In fact, the news of the doubling of the distribution fund and the strengthening of the fund for minority films has just been announced, so we could not miss such an important opportunity, which will give our operators the chance to interact with the main international players. The European Film Market will be the ideal platform to promote the latest national film products, to give voice to the industry representatives of the associations and will serve above all to producers and distributors to present the Italian system in this important showcase.”

The EFM will take place from February 15 to 21, 2024 during the 74th Berlin International Film Festival.

Press Office
May 20, 2023