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CANNES 2009 Estonia

Seven films screening at Market

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Seven films screening at Market

Estonia has a strong line-up of seven feature films screening at the Cannes Market, held during the Cannes Film Festival (May 13-24), most of them co-produced with Finland, Germany and Russia.

Co-productions are essential for Estonian producers to get their projects off the ground, as the 2009 budget from the Estonian Film Foundation (EFF) was cut by 7% (from €4m in 2008) and local broadcasters are struggling to keep in business. “Our situation is not as bad as Latvia (where the film budget for 2009 was cut by 33%), but times are tough,” acknowledged Karlo Funk, head of production for the EFF”.

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Funk is attending Cannes with three of his colleagues from the EFF: Marge Liiske managing director; Tristan Priimägi, head of International Relations; and Eda Koppel, information manager. They will be welcoming their European colleagues at Baltic Films stand E12, Palais Riviera.

The seven Estonian films screening at the market include four premieres. Rasmus Merivoo’s Buratino, Son of Pinocchio, an Estonian/Russian co-production, was released domestically in April.

Disco & Atomia War by the established filmmaker Jaak Kilmi (Revolution of Pigs) is a docu-fiction that explores how Western pop culture shown to Russian kids on Finnish television has contributed to shaping their world views, acting like a window to a world of dreams, to the displeasure of Russian authorities. The film was produced by Estonia’s Kiur Aarma (Eetriüksus) with Finland’s Aleksy Bardy (Helsinki Filmi).

Bardy also co-produced another Estonian film premiering at the market: Rene Vilbre’s youth drama I Was Here [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
, the eighth best-grossing film in Estonia last year (over 45,000 admissions). The film produced by Riina Sildos (Amrion) has just been picked up for international distribution by US company Shoreline Entertainment.

Ain MäeotsTaarka [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
was produced by Anneli Ahven (Exit Film). Through the portrayal of a strong woman, the film introduces us to the Seto community who left Russia for Finland in the 1930s.

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