New Cinema Network
New Cinema Network (NCN) is the Rome Film Festival’s co-production market, the place where filmmakers – a sampling of the most intriguing new talent on the film scene today – will find the ideal platform for presenting their new projects and getting in touch with the European film industry’s major players.
The 24 projects showcased by NCN this year were assessed and selected by a committee made up of Marco Müller, Marie-Pierre Duhamel and Sandra Hebron, along with NCN staff.
As far as the international projects are concerned, the NCN lineup offered an ample array of countries, themes, styles, genres and impressions, with filmmakers such as the Flemish director Eric de Kuyper (My Life as an Actor), also a well-known actor, writer, semiologist and artist; Spain’s Lluis Galter (The Substance), whose Caracremada premiered in the Horizons section of the 68th Venice Film Festival and won acclaim on the international festival circuit; and the Franco-Greek director Loukianos Moshonas (Saint Nicholas), making his feature directorial debut. A graduate of the Berlinale Talent Campus, the German filmmaker Willen Droste presented his project Unsettled, while the U.K. was represented by the project Passing Clouds by Tatiana Korol, jointly selected by NCN and the London Production & Finance Market. Switzerland weighed in with two projects: Café Abu Nawas by Samir, Switzerland’s leading independent filmmaker, of Iraqi descent; and My Motherby Géraldine Zosso, chosen thanks to an exclusive partnership agreement between NCN and the Cannes Film Festival’s prestigiousRésidence de la Cinéfondation.
And thanks to another equally important and firmly-established collaboration with the Sundance Institute, the NCN slate added the projects Solitaire King by Bassam Jarbawi (Palestine) and A Reverence for Spiders by Faiza Ambah and Karim Bensalah (Saudi Arabia).
On the European front, the E.U.’s eastern members made a fine showing at NCN this year, with Little Crusader by Václav Kadrnka (the Czech Republic), Out by Gyorgy Kristof (the Slovak Republic), Peace to Us in Our Dreams by the renowned, Lithuanian filmmakerSharunas Bartas, andDawn by Laila Pakalnina (Latvia), the great director kudoed at the Rome Film Festival’s CinemaXXI competition last year (and chair of the CinemaXXI jury this year).
Latin American filmmakers were also amply represented, from the Argentinian director Leandro Listorti (Shadows in the Frame), who attracted international attention with his documentary The Young Dead, to the Brazilian Ricardo Alves (with his debut film, Eilon Rabin Doesn’t Believe in Death); Alvis is also the editor behind AvantiPopolo, winner of the CinemaXXI best film award at the Rome Film Festival last year.
The French-produced Voice of Egypt is the new project by Iranian filmmaker (and exile in New York) Shirin Neshat, the multi-award-winning contemporary visual artist and rising star of the world film scene (her Women Without Men won the Silver Lion at the 2009 Venice Film Festival).
Last but not least, NCN was proud to present the new project by Kamal Swaroop (Omniym, a satirical descent into contemporary hell and adaptation of a Flann O’Brian novel). With his Om-Dar-Ba-Dar, which represented a milestone in India’s New Wave, Swaroop became a cult director for three generations of Indian filmmakers.
Italian directors and producers also turned out in droves for NCN’s call for entries this year and provided the international lineup with 7 Italian projects.
The roster included: Fabrizio Cattani (Uomini e Cani), a writer and filmmaker who directed, among others, Maternity Blues, winner of 16 awards at Italian and international film festivals; Simone Gattoni (Il Ballo), who produced several important documentaries, such as S.B. Io lo conoscevo bene (Rome 2012), and then moved behind the camera to film an adaptation of a novella by Iréne Nemirovsky, produced by Marco Bellocchio’s production company; Aureliano Amadei (Il Pendolo), whose 20 Sigarette won the Controcampo Italiano award at the 2010 Venice Film Festival, and who was nominated best debut director at the Silver Ribbons and David di Donatello in 2011; and Roberto De Paolis (La Moglie Di Lot), a versatile artist highly active on the comtemporary art and photography scene, directing his new film after his short Alice, which premiered in the Controcampo Italiano section at the 2011 Venice Film Festival. The lineup of Italian projects was rounded out by Marco Dentici (Il Vento e La Luce), the renowned set designer who has worked alongside preeminent stage and film directors for forty years and is now on his directorial debut.
Two of the Italian projects showcased at NCN this year have been selected for Words on Screen, the initiative designed to promote internationally two essential segments of Italy’s cultural industry, book publishing and film production, in a partnership with ANICA and AIE, and with the support of the Ministry of Economic Development. The films are La Cospirazione Delle Colombe, based on a story by Vincenzo Latronico (published by Bompiani) and directed by Marina Spada, a familiar face on the international festival circuit, from Rome and Venice to Toronto; and Stupor Mundi, based on the novel Storia Controversa Dell'inarrestabile Fortuna Del Vino Aglianico Nel Mondo by Gaetano Cappelli (published by Marsilio), and produced by Andrea Stucovitz and the company he co-founded, Partner Media Investment.
Nearly 50% of the projects tapped by NCN over its past editions, in fact, are now finished films today, or currently shooting or in post-production. To name just a few: Il Sud è niente by Fabio Mollo, which premiered at the latest Toronto Film Festival and competed at our 2013 Rome Film Festival, in the Alice nella città section, where it won the award for best producer of first and second films; Io sono Li by Andrea Segre and Another Silence by Santiago Amigorena, both showcased at the 2011 Venice Film Festival, at Venice Days; L’Uomo che verrà by Giorgio Diritti, kudoed at the 2009 Rome Film Festival; as well as Simon Konianski by Micha Wald, Life in One Day by Mark de Cloe, Illegal by Olivier Masset-Depasse, La Mirada Invisible by Diego Lerman (a 2010 Directors’ Fortnight selection at Cannes) and Il canto di Paloma by Claudia Llosa, winner of the Golden Bear at the 2008 Berlin Film Festival, and Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Film.
In eight years, NCN has built up a wide-ranging network of relationships and partnerships that is constantly growing. Right now it can count on over 30 partners, including the main European film promotion agencies and international partners such as Cinéfondation - L’Atelier de Cannes, Film London Production Finance Market, Sundance Feature Film Labs, and ACE – Atelier du Cinéma Européen. Moreover, for the last four years NCN has benefited from a fruitful collaboration with Italian and European political institutions, including ministries, the European Commission and the Council of Europe.