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Rita Linda Potyondi • Distributor

European Distributors: Up Next! – Hungary

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Rita Linda Potyondi • Distributor

We met with the head of Cirko Film - Másképp Foundation, a Hungarian distribution company who also operate a movie theatre in Budapest. Focusing on international – and in particular European – auteur films, the distributor has in the past in Hungary released films by the Dardenne brothers, Robert Guédiguian, Bruno Dumont, Fernando Leon de Aranoa, Baltasar Kormakur, Alain Corneau, Bruno Podalydès, Bertrand Bonello, Claire Denis, Ferzan Ozpetek, Catalin Mitulescu and Oskar Roehler.

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Cineuropa: What is the philosophy of Cirko Film - Másképp Foundation?
Rita Linda Potyondi: We are the only Hungarian distributor to operate as a non-profit-making foundation. Guided by personal taste, we release films labelled as difficult, for a targeted and limited audience – we think it is important to show these films in Hungary. Besides the box office cashiers at the Cirko-Gejzír theatre (ourselves or volunteers) and the projectionist, there are only three salaried employees among us. And we do everything: the programming, festival organisation and press relations. As a foundation, we cannot receive municipal or other subsidies; we therefore apply for funding from the Media Programme with as many films as possible, and for backing from the Motion Picture Public Foundation of Hungary and the National Cultural Fund. However, the amounts are limited.

What kind of films do you focus on?
Above all those that explore themes related to discriminated groups: homosexuals, handicapped people, ethnic or religious minorities and victims of family abuse. We’re never involved in the production process due to a lack of financing capacity, which explains why we don’t distribute Hungarian films. In order to choose our films, we go to festivals, but we also keep an eye on sellers’ line-ups on their websites. But we never buy works we haven’t viewed, apart from exceptions such as the Dardenne brothers’ films.

Which European features have you released this year?
We enjoyed surprise success with Anders Thomas Jensen’s Adam's Apples [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Anders Thomas Jensen
interview: Mads Mikkelsen
interview: Tivi Magnusson
film profile
]
. The film wasn’t really recent, we didn’t do a big promotional campaign and it was released on only one screen, but it’s become a sort of cult film here.

We also did well with Palme d’Or-winner 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Cristian Mungiu
interview: Oleg Mutu
film profile
]
thanks to the enthusiastic critical response; and Persepolis [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Marc-Antoine Robert
interview: Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Pa…
film profile
]
, for which we handed out an enormous number of promotional flyers in pubs, movie theatres and cultural venues. A few days before its theatrical release, the title screened at the Anilogue Festival and Marjane Satrapi’s comic book was published in Hungary at the same time.

Finally, we also enjoyed success with Susanne Bier’s After the Wedding [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Sisse Graum Jørgensen
interview: Susanne Bier
film profile
]
. In addition, we distributed Andrea Arnold’s Red Road [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, Daniele Luchetti’s My Brother Is an Only Child [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Daniele Luchetti
interview: Riccardo Tozzi
film profile
]
, Pernille Fischer Christensen’s A Soap [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Lars Bredo Rahbek
interview: Pernille Fischer Christensen
film profile
]
and Nikolaus Geyrhalter’s documentary Our Daily Bread [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
.

What is your line-up for the last few months of 2008?
We’re going to release Lorna’s Silence [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Arta Dobroshi
interview: Arta Dobroshi
interview: Jean-Pierre et Luc Dardenne
interview: Olivier Bronckart
film profile
]
by the Dardenne brothers, Louise Michel [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Benoît Delépine and Gustav…
interview: Benoît Jaubert
film profile
]
by Gustave de Kervern and Benoît Delépine, Nic Balthazar’s Ben X [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Nic Balthazar
interview: Peter Bouckaert
film profile
]
, Simon Staho’s Heaven’s Heart [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, Ole Christian Madsen’s Kira’s Reason, Josef Fares’ Leo [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, Anders Thomas Jensen’s The Green Butchers [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
and Flickering Lights, and Ole Bornedal’s Just Another Love Story [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
.

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