Country Focus: Germany
FFA announces Industry Tigers 2009 with Constantin on top
by Bénédicte Prot
16/09/2009 - The FFA (German film regulating body) has announced its "Industry Tigers", awarded to the most dynamic producers and distributors and, as of this year, to the best short films. The top tiger of 2009 is unquestionably Constantin, which dominates the first two categories.
The Tiger winners receive automatic support, which is awarded according to a points system taking into account the number of admissions, major festival selections and prizes garnered by each film. In total, the FFA has this year allocated €13.4m (around €10m in production funding, €2.9m for distribution and over €0.5m for shorts).
Constantin is the production company of the year with 12 films (including The Baader Meinhof Complex [trailer], Asterix at the Olympic Games [trailer] and The Wave [trailer]), which have earned it €2.2m in automatic support.
Next in line are SamFilm with five productions (including Wild Soccer Bunch 5) for €900,000; and Warner Bros with nine productions (including Rabbit Without Ears and 1 1/2 Knights) for €600,000. FFA director Peter Dinges emphasised that the automatic support for production functions as a financing guarantee for films of a certain scale and so, in the long term, helps maintain a strong market share.
The highest-earning productions are: Rabbit Without Ears [trailer] (which alone secured €1.14m in funding this year for its producers, Barefoot Films, SevenPictures Film and Warner Bros. Entertainment - €2m in total, taking into account last year’s subsidies, as the film was released at the end of 2007); The Wave (€900,000 to be shared between Rat Pack Filmproduktion, Constantin, B.A. Produktion and Zweite Medienfonds GFP GmbH & Co. KG); and The Baader Meinhof Complex (€800,000).
Auteur films with the most points for their performances at festivals are Leroy [trailer] (Dreamer Joint Venture Filmproduktion) and Waltz With Bashir [trailer] (Razor Filmproduktion), followed by The Counterfeiters [trailer] (Magnolia Filmproduktion GmbH), Cherry Blossoms - Hanami [trailer] (Olga Film) and Pool of Princesses (Reverse Angle Factory).
Constantin comes out top of the distributors for the fifth year in a row, with 17 films for €600,000 in funding. Warner Bros. Entertainment and Universum Film share second place with €300,000 each for ten and five box office hits, respectively.
Taken into consideration for the first time by the FFA, this year around 100 shorts were awarded a total of €562,000. The biggest winner is Sommersonntag with over €13,000.