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IP/11/561

Brussels, 12 May 2011

Cannes Film Festival celebrates 20 years of MEDIA programme

The 20th anniversary of the European Commission's MEDIA programme for cinema will be the focus of the annual "European Rendezvous" at the Cannes Film Festival on 16 May. European Commissioner for Culture Androulla Vassiliou and Gilles Jacob, President of the Festival, will host the event with 20 European film directors, including Costa-Gavras, Théo Angelopoulos, Radu Mihaileanu and Jaco Van Dormael. They will discuss the MEDIA fund's achievements and the future of film-making in Europe. This year, MEDIA is supporting 20 films at the Festival, including eight in competition for the festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or. The films, from both new and well-known directors, include "La Piel Que Habito" (Pedro Almodóvar), "Melancholia" (Lars von Trier) and "Le Havre" (Aki Kaurismäki). See annex for full list. The MEDIA programme has invested more than €1.5 billion in the European cinema industry since 1991.

"I am delighted that European films once again feature very strongly at Cannes: it is the best possible reward for our 20 years of support for the film industry," said Commissioner Vassiliou. "The money we have invested has made a critical difference to the industry and helped to ensure cultural diversity and more choice for audiences. It has also boosted the development of European film-making. Without this support, some great films would not have made it to the screen at all."

During the festival, the Commissioner will also reiterate the European Commission's commitment to maintaining the MEDIA programme under the future EU budget. "Concerns have been raised in recent months and I want to allay those fears once and for all. The MEDIA programme is here to stay. We are determined to build on its successes so that the programme is even more effective in creating jobs and in meeting new challenges like digitization."

During her three-day visit to the festival, the Commissioner will hold meetings with, among others, the French Minister for Culture, Frédéric Mitterrand, industry representatives, and some of the personalities behind the films.

On 15 May, Commissioner Vassiliou will present the 2011 MEDIA European Talent Prize for the best film project to female scriptwriters Virág Zomborácz and Hanna Sköld (see IP/11/550).

She will also meet the team behind "17 filles" by Delphine and Muriel Coulin, which is showing as part of the "Semaine de la Critique" (critics' week) selection. Based on a true story, the film is about a group of high school girls who decide to get pregnant at the same time.

In the evening, she will attend the screening of "The Artist", a black-and-white film by French director Michel Hazanavicius set in 1920s Hollywood. It tells the story of the contrasting fortunes of a young actress (Bérénice Bejo) and a silent movie star (Jean Dujardin). The advent of the 'talkies' spells stardom for her - and the death knell for his career.

On 17 May, the Commission is organising a debate with national and regional film funds on new financial instruments to support the film industry.

Background

The MEDIA programme is investing €755 million in the European film industry in the period 2007-2013 (more than €1.5 billion has been granted since its launch in 1991). The aim is to improve the distribution and promotion of European films and strengthen the competitiveness of the sector. Around half of the funding goes to distributors showing films made outside their own domestic market, with 20% allocated for film development and the remainder for promotion and training. Production companies selected for support receive on average grants of €50 000.

Films receiving support from MEDIA have won 12 Palme d’Or, 13 Grand Prix and 9 Best Director prizes at the Cannes Film Festival (see list below).

For more information:

The MEDIA programme: http://ec.europa.eu/media

The Cannes International Film Festival: http://www.festival-cannes.fr

Commissioner Vassiliou's website:

http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/vassiliou/index_en.htm

Annex I: MEDIA films showing at the Cannes Festival 2011

COMPETITION

LA PIEL QUE HABITO - Pedro ALMODÓVAR (Spain)

L'APOLLONIDE - SOUVENIRS DE LA MAISON CLOSE - Bertrand BONELLO (France)

LE GAMIN AU VÉLO - Jean-Pierre et Luc DARDENNE (Belgium, France, Italy)

LE HAVRE - Aki KAURISMÄKI (Finland, France)

LA SOURCE DES FEMMES - Radu MIHAILEANU (France)

HABEMUS PAPAM - Nanni MORETTI (Italy)

THIS MUST BE THE PLACE - Paolo SORRENTINO (Italy, France, Ireland)

MELANCHOLIA - Lars VON TRIER (Denmark, Sweden, France, Germany, Italy)

CLOSING FILM

LES BIEN-AIMÉS - Christophe HONORÉ, (France)

UN CERTAIN REGARD

L'EXERCICE DE L'ETAT - Pierre SCHOELLER (France)

SEANCES SPECIALES

MICHEL PETRUCCIANI - Michael RADFORD (France, Germany, Italy)

QUINZAINE

LA FÉE - Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon et Bruno Romy (France, Belgium)

CODE BLUE - Urszula Antoniak (The Netherlands)

THE OTHER SIDE OF SLEEP - Rebecca Daly (The Netherlands, Hungary, Ireland)

LES GÉANTS - Bouli Lanners (Belgium, France, Luxemburg)

PLAY - Ruben Östlund (Sweden)

JEANNE CAPTIVE - Philippe Ramos (France)

CORPO CELESTE - Alice Rohrwacher (Italy)

IMPARDONNABLES - André Téchiné (France) 

SEMAINE DE LA CRITIQUE INTERNATIONALE

 17 FILLES - Delphine Coulin, Muriel Coulin (France)

Annex II: Prize-winning MEDIA films at Cannes since 1991

Palme d'Or winners

1992

Den goda viljan (The Best Intentions)

Bille August

Denmark

1996

Secrets & Lies

Mike Leigh

UK

1998

Mia eoniotita ke mia mera (Eternity and a Day)

Theo Angelopoulos

Greece

1999

Rosetta

Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne

Belgium

2000

Dancer in the Dark

Lars von Trier

Denmark

2001

La stanza del figlio (The Son's Room)

Nanni Moretti

Italy

2002

The Pianist

Roman Polanski

FR/DE/PL/UK

2005

L'Enfant (The Child)

Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne

Belgium

2006

The Wind That Shakes the Barley

Ken Loach

UK

2007

4 luni, 3 săptămâni și 2 zile (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days)

Cristian Mungiu

Romania

2008

Entre les murs (The Class)

Laurent Cantet

France

2009

Das weiße Band (The White Ribbon)

Michael Haneke

Austria

Best Director winners

1993

Naked

Mike Leigh

UK

1994

Caro diario (Dear Dairy)

Nanni Moretti

Italy

1995

La Haine

Mathieu Kassovitz

France

1998

The General

John Boorman

UK/IE

1999

Todo Sobre Mi Madre (All About My Mother)

Pedro Almodóvar

Spain

2004

Exils

Tony Gatlif

France

2005

Caché

Michael Haneke

Austria

2007

Le Scaphandre et le Papillon

Julian Schnabel

France

2010

Tournée

Mathieu Amalric

France

Grand Prix winners

1991

La Belle Noiseuse

Jacques Rivette

France

1992

IL Ladro di bambini (The Stolen Children)

Gianni Amelio

Italy

1993

In weiter Ferne, so nah! (Faraway, So Close)

Wim Wenders

Germany

1995

To Vlemma tou Odyssea (Ulysses' Gaze)

Theo Angelopoulos

Greece

1996

Breaking the Waves

Lars von Trier

Denmark

1998

La vita è bella

Roberto Benigni

Italy

1999

L'humanité

Bruno Dumont

France

2001

La Pianiste (The Piano Teacher)

Michael Haneke

Austria

2002

Mies vailla menneisyyttä (The Man Without a Past)

Aki Kaurismäki

Finland

2006

Flandres (Flanders)

Bruno Dumont

France

2008

Gomorra

Matteo Garrone

Italy

2009

Un prophète

Jacques Audiard

France

2010

Des hommes et des dieux (Of Gods and Men)

Xavier Beauvois

France


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