A Network for new European cinema
by Gabriele Barcaro
28/09/2007 - In keeping with the oldest of traditions, even the RomeFilmFest wants to be more than just a showcase. Like Rotterdam with its Hubert Bals Fund, Cannes with Cinéfondation, and Thessaloniki with the Balkan Film Fund, the Fest would also like to be fertile ground for the birth of tomorrow’s talent and the growth of young filmmakers.
To this end, the New Cinema Network (NCE), says coordinator Teresa Cavina, "supports independent producers, it helps them find the necessary funds to complete their projects and assists young directors looking to make their second film.”
While those backed by the NCE do include important names such as Tsai Ming-liang and Chantal Akerman, its mission is aimed above all emerging directors. In particular, to flank its international projects the Fest this year chose to dedicate a specific focus to young European cinema, selecting 14 projects for second films in the hopes of seeing them soon on the silver screen. In the meantime, audiences will be able to view the often surprising debut films of these young directors of promise.
There are four Italian names among the 14. Documentary filmmakers Agostino Ferrente (The Orchestra of Piazza Vittorio [trailer]) and Giovanni Piperno are working on their first feature film, Le cose belle; Domenico Distilo, whose graduation film Inatteso screened at the Berlinale Forum, is preparing Quando gli elefanti combattono; and Mohsen Melliti, behind the recent Io, l'altro, is working on Returning to Haifa.
The most highly anticipated titles include The Class [trailer] by Ilmar Raag (a winner at Karlovy Vary and chosen to represent Estonia in the Oscar race, see news), the surprising Horse Thieves [trailer] by Belgium’s Micha Wald (presented this year at Cannes' Semaine de la Critique) and Retrieval [trailer] by Poland’s Slawomir Fabicki, who has won numerous prizes at home and abroad.
(Translated from Italian)