The first edition of SOFA School of Film Agents has invited eleven participants from
ten countries having ten projects in tow. Explore the fresh ideas by these up-and-coming film agents:
Melinda Boros is a graduate of the Sapientia University of Cluj-Napoca, where she majored in Photography, Film and Media Studies. She quickly discovered her area of interest and deepened her knowledge in art film distribution and art cinema management, film funding and production. Her work experience includes the production of five shorts and two feature films, a project manager, production and distribution assistant job at Argo Audiovisual Association and Cine Corvin Inc respectively. She now works as head of acquisitions at Clorofilm Inc and as a TV producer at Look TV. Boros took part in several community projects and worked as a location and project manager at TIFF Transilvanian International Film Festival in 2008, and as a tutor of production management at the Filmtett Workshops in 2010.
CASA TIFF is a cultural arts center dedicated to promoting film literacy, enhancing the lives and education of schoolchildren and teens by introducing them to the transformative nature of film and to nurture the cinema audiences of tomorrow. The year-round activities of CASA TIFF are culminating in the annual Transilvania International Film Festival (TIFF). Via seminars and workshops the yet to be established TIFF STUDIO would like to offer possibilities of discovering and developing new talents among those participants who see new, exciting challenges in the world of film and find them worthy of undertaking. TIFF STUDIO DISCOVERY will offer innovative programs in new media, fiction film production, screenwriting and more for students ages five and up. TIFF STUDIO CHALLENGE include workshops for professionals and amateurs in the field of storytelling/scriptwriting, film acting and Creative and Entrepreneurial Producer.
Gábor Böszörményi, born in 1980, has a Master’s degree in economy and film history. He is the founder and managing director of Mozinet Ltd. The company founded a monthly film magazine and operates two arthouse cinemas. Since 2006, Mozinet has been distributing arthouse films and is organizing educational programs. Böszörményi is the former editor-in-chief of Mozinet Magazine, former vice-president and president of the Hungarian Federation of Film Associations, member of juries at international festivals as representative of Europa Cinemas, FIPRESCI and FICC, independent expert at support decisions of the EACEA and the Hungarian Motion Picture Foundation, and vice-president of the Hungarian Art House Cinema Association.
In the last years, a lot of arthouse cinemas in Central and Eastern European countries had to close. There are very few second-run cinemas programming the films several weeks or months after the premiere. This has lead to the shortening of the life-circle of the films.
The project’s mission is to increase the performance and the social importance of the arthouse cinemas by establishing and operating a website through which the audience can program the films they want to watch. The multilingual website will feature a database of films available in the selected country, including synopsis, trailer, stills, language versions, restrictions to availability etc., as well as a database of local cinemas. The visitor can either create a new screening event by choosing a film from the database or join an existing event.
Ketie Danelia has been actively involved in the audiovisual sector since 2006.
Between 2010 and 2013 she has been working for the Georgian National Film Center (GNFC) as a manager for the film export and distribution department on multiple international and local projects. Before embarking on the GNFC team Ketie arranged the OUDS / Thelma Holt International tour in Tbilisi with Alan Rickman at the Rustaveli Theatre. She worked for the Tbilisi International Film Festival from 2006 to 2009 executing and coordinating various festival related tasks including guest, press and program coordination. Since 2006, she has been assisting Independent Filmmakers’ Association South Caucasus (IF-ASC) in international projects. Ketie has been the part of the EAVE film finance forum in 2012. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations at the Ilia State University in Tbilisi.
The Georgian cinema chain collapsed with the meltdown of the Soviet Union. In comparison to 120 cinemas and 20 million moviegoers in Soviet times, currently there are three cinemas in Georgia which are owned by one company. In recent years Georgia did strong leap forward in terms of revitalization of its film sector. Yet, the distribution and exhibition system is still underdeveloped.
In order to fill the above mentioned gap, Ablabuda Film is keen to contribute to the process of the national film sector development and establish at least one arthouse cinema in Georgia. This »Unique Screen« will allow access to quality films, develop niche audiences and fight mainstream content dominating local market nowadays. Our key objective is to strengthen circulation of non-mainstream films in Georgia and raise the awareness of European and international films.
Leana Jalukse, born in 1979, started out in commercial television while doing a BA degree in Broadcast Media (graduated in 2001). She went on to work as Assistant Director/Production Coordinator on three feature films, two TV features and numerous documentaries. After completing her MA in Film Arts (2009), majoring in screenwriting and script editing, she has worked as a freelancer writing and editing scripts, as well as a copywriter in both AV and IT industries. She continues to work for film and TV producers writing funding applications and reports, coordinating projects from development to completion, and distributing feature and documentary films. Leana has managed the Co-Production Market of the Baltic Event, the largest regional film market, for four years, and also represents FilmEstonia.eu, the Estonian Film Commission, since the beginning of 2013.
About 30 documentaries are made in Estonia each year. Most of these have premieres in theatres, but these screenings are not open to the public. Very few documentary films have a run in cinemas, often over the course of not more than one week.
Therefore, the project DocSpot wants to establish a proper distribution system for Estonian documentary films in order to make the national documentary film culture accessible to a broader public. One of the major tasks will be to create a database of documentary film producers and movie theatres as well as a catalogue of projects that will be distributed to interested cinemas. The work of DocSpot will include the development of a distribution and marketing plan, the logistics of copies, preparing contracts, delivering promotional materials and screening copies as well as doing reports and invoicing. DocSpot will also help organizing screenings with special guests and offer the required equipment. Due to the emergence of DCP the digital distribution will be one of the future topics.
Ivan Vasyliovych Kozlenko, born in 1981, graduated in philosophy and cultural studies at Odessa I.I. Mechnikov National University. As a student, he initiated and was the editor of »Nervometr« literary and arts magazine, the city’s first art magazine to explore Ukrainian literature and art. After graduation he taught philosophy and sociology at the Odessa Theatre and Art College. In 2009, Kozlenko initiated and became the producer and art-director of the Odessa festival of silent films and contemporary music »Mute Nights«. He won a grant from the International Renaissance Foundation to publish a DVD collection of silent Ukrainian film classics featuring contemporary soundtracks that was published in January 2012. Since 2011, Kozlenko works as a Deputy General Director and the Director of the film archive at the National Oleksandr Dovzhenko Centre.
The Ukranian National Film Museum is established as a separate unit within the Film Archive of the National Oleksandr Dovzhenko Centre. The Dovzhenko Centre owns not only the largest collection of films, but also the most representative collection of cinematographic instrumentation for projection and replication. The sections of the permanent exhibition of the future museum will be projection, documents and photographs, film costume and film equipment. The space structure should not only correspond to the periods of film history (proto-cinema, early silent films, sound, color cinema), but also to the historical zones that represent Ukrainian cinema in the world.
Eva Križková graduated in Film theory at University of performing arts in Bratislava and is in her first year of PhD. Studies at Slovak academy of sciences with the project of aesthetic aspects of author’s film distribution. In 2010, she co-founded the Kinečko magazine where she works as an editor-in-chief. She also co-founded FILMTOPIA company which shapes itself as a distribution laboratory for researching new ways of distribution, especially for independent cinematography. She also works as a scriptwriter.
Eva Pavlovičová graduated in Law studies at Faculty of Law of Comenius University in Bratislava and Directing and Producing studies at Film School in Zlín. In 2010, she co-founded the Kinečko magazine, where she works as an executive producer and editor. She also co-founded FILMTOPIA company, which shapes itself as a distribution laboratory for researching new ways of distribution, especially for independent cinematography. Since 2012, she is the Festival Director of International Animation Festival Fest Anča. In her spare time she focuses on shooting experimental films.
Project idea: Mira Fornay
Realisation and development: Eva Križková, Eva Pavlovičová
The project’s idea is a Festival of Independent Authors Cinema at High Schools organized by Slovakian students. They will be supervised by our organizations (Filmtopia, Mirafox) and by experts from various fields. Our intention is to help motivated high school students to get into the process of independent festival work from the film selection to the actual screening. The final competition is not about a winning film, but about a winning student essay explaining his choices in the process of festival organization. This way, young people get involved in author’s cinema, sharpen their critical mind and express their own opinions. We are aware that we need upcoming generations who are open-minded towards the author and arthouse cinema, as without them film as an artistic form won’t survive.
Jan Naszewski is Head of Industry and International Promotion at T-Mobile New Horizons IFF and CEO at his own label New Europe Film Sales. His main areas of expertise in film are exhibition and sales. Since 2009, his main focus was to create a meeting point for the international film industry at the T-Mobile New Horizons IFF. There, he put together co-production markets and events which bring key industry players to Wrocław to work with young promising film professionals. Furthermore, he has been involved in film festivals since 2003 – working at and programming events such as the T-Mobile New Horizons IFF (Wrocław), Krakow Film Festival, East End Film Festival (London), New Europe Film Festival (Edinburgh) and Cottbus IFF. He is also working as a matchmaker for the Connecting Cottbus Market.
The Film Incubator functions as Short Film Fund and film development cell in Poland where there is no financing system for films below 15 minutes outside films schools. Within the Film Incubator, we would like to develop, finance and produce 3 short fiction films per year. The process of production would focus on developing daring films, that combine great storytelling with experimental elements. We would select interesting young directors that are already films school graduates or have made their debut features already, and together with them, define stories that they want to tell. The films produced at the Incubator would then be promoted and sold by us using my experience as sales agent and promoter of shorts.
After experiences in journalism and working in various fields of the media industry, Johannes Rexin completed the Media Business School MEGA master program in Ronda, Spain, and has since been involved in feature film production on a European level. He is currently in postproduction on »Qissa«, the first Indo-German coproduction ever. Johannes’ credits as Producer and Line Producer include: »Nymphomaniac« by Lars Von Trier, »Hannah Arendt« by Margarethe von Trotta, »Bal« by Semih Kaplanoglu, »Antichrist« by Lars von Trier and »Lemon Tree« by Eran Riklis.
TransOdra is a moving film festival to enhance film literacy, criss-crossing via chosen locations along the German-Polish border from the Baltic Sea in the North to the Czech mountains in the South.
Culturally, the ubiquitous trend of cultural desertion and small-town cinemas closing can be observed accompanying the move of younger people to towns and cities. The region with it’s many fine locations of historic substance lacks connection to the cultural centers of Berlin and Warsaw and the thriving Baltic Sea coast towns. In this context, we detect a need for a cultural initiative giving space to contemporary cultural expressions, connecting people from all ages from both sides of the formerly divisive border, into one audience. On four weekends TransOdra will focus audiences in towns along the route on movie experiences with their peers. The joint audience experience will sustain and develop film literacy where it is endangered or, due to absence of cinema houses, already gone.
Mira Staleva, born in 1971 in Bulgaria, has been involved in different areas of the audiovisual world in the last 15 years. She started working with Sofia International Film Festival since the very beginning and is now the deputy director of the festival and head of Sofia Meetings, a coproduction market in the frame of the festival. Staleva is involved in production, distribution and exhibition, the main activities of Art Fest Ltd.
The project’s aim is to promote the films of Bulgarian directors and their projects on a national and international base. That means above all presenting Bulgarian films at the big international festivals and markets, like Cannes and Berlinale, and informing about upcoming titles and directors via industry screenings, catalogues, DVDs, receptions and meetings. Beside, there will be an online presence via website, newsletter and social media activities.
The promotion of the films is supposed to be one of the activities of the Bulgarian National Film Center, but a lack of resources and experts makes it not efficient. At the moment, Sofia International Film Festival and Sofia Meetings, the coproduction market of the festival, are covering big part of the promotion of Bulgarian films worldwide. So, we would like to use their knowledge of the market and already established contacts and jointly create a new team which will be working on the promotion of Bulgarian films on a regular base.
Sonja Topalovic works at SOULFOOD international sales and distribution as Festival & Marketing Manager. She finished Academy of Fine Arts, Art Management Department. For five years she has been working in the field of art and culture writing projects, organizing events and promoting them. She is one of the authors of international art festival Š.U.N.D. (What Does Art Offer to Society). She and her team received the Belgrade City Award for youth creativity for Š.U.N.D. 2012.
Festival Box Office is a project that aims to collect data about movie screenings at festivals. FBO is conceived as an interactive platform that collects data consisting of the number of festivals, the number of festival screenings, the audience attendance and the total income of the ticket sales. These parameters are essential elements that provide an insight into a movie success. As such, they can be relevant indicators for festivals, funds, but also authors themselves for further developing of film projects. In the end, Festival Box Office will provide an international statistical analysis of about 4,000 festivals.