When it was inaugurated back in 2000, the Village International played host to 12 countries and 14 pavilions. Ten years later, it received 50 countries in 58 pavilions. In 2010, five new countries joined: Albania, Cyprus, Macedonia, Puerto Rico and Qatar. In fact, the Village International has grown so quickly that a number of countries, including Belarus and Azerbaijan, are currently on a waiting list.
Let’s take a quick look at this dynamic initiative.
Located at the heart of the Festival de Cannes, the Village International is a microcosm of world cinema. This exhibition and networking venue aims to enable countries to showcase and raise the profiles of their cinematography, their cultural identity and their institutions. The “Riviera” plays host to foreign Ministries of Culture and Film Centres, while the “Pantiero”, which primarily unites all the French institutions (CNC, Unifrance, SACD, CST, Rendez-Vous des Exploitants, etc.) is becoming increasingly international every year with the arrival of funds and commissions from other countries (Italian Film Commission, Austrian Film Commission, the Belgium Wallimages Fund, and so on).
The Village’s organisation operates smoothly and includes making contact with institutions at markets or festivals abroad (Rome, Berlin, AFM, etc.), marketing the exhibition spaces, establishing needs (surface areas and services), creating each pavilion on-site and equipping and outfitting the Village (signs and decoration). The Village gradually takes shape between September and May.“Cannes has enormous potential, but those attending the Festival need to know how to take advantage of the tools and synergies on offer. During the event, one of our main roles is to provide support and advice. This is a very important aspect.” (Myriam Arab,Director of Operations, Marketing and Sales)
In their pavilions, countries welcome professionals from home (producers, distributors, festival organisers and film commissions) and meet with their foreign counterparts to boost the promotion of their films. The productive nature of these meetings was demonstrated particularly well in 2010: thanks to the initiative of Serbia and Croatia, eight South-Eastern European countries joined forces to create the SEE Pavilion (South-Eastern Europe Pavilion) with the aim of enabling small countries with emerging film industries to raise their profiles on the international stage. While it is still too early to say what will be new in 2011, we already know that the organisers will be focusing on backing this nascent joint venture, which is a symbol of the success of the Village International, and on supporting emerging film industries.
> More information on the Village International.