Carey Mulligan, Matthias Schoenaerts Join Industry Lobby Backing European Film Promotion
BERLIN– Some of Europe’s biggest actors, directors and producers, as well as the heads of the Berlin, Toronto and Sundance Film Festivals have urged the European Parliament to continue funding European Film Promotion (EFP), the umbrella group that supports locally-made movies across Europe and around the world.
Drive star Carey Mulligan, German actor Daniel Bruhl (Inglourious Basterds) and Matthias Schoenaerts, the Belgian actor who stars alongside Marion Cotillard in Jacques Audiard’s Rust and Bone, were among the big names who signed a letter sent to European Parliament on Monday in support of the EFP.
Berlin festival director Dieter Kosslick, Sundance director John Cooper and Toronto Film Festival CEO Piers Handling, all of whom have worked together with the organization on joint festival events, also lent their names to the document.
The letter, which is addressed to Doris Pack, the chair of the European Committee for Culture and Education, is part of a lobbying effort to ensure the EFP keeps its funding under the EU’s new financial framework for cultural affairs.
By the end of next month, the European Council of Ministers is set to decide on the structure of the multi-year financial framework which will determine how the EU doles out its film subsidies, including the funding for MEDIA, the EU’s production and industry support program. The new rules will govern the EU’s budget for cultural and educational affairs for the 2014-2020 period. The EFP is one of several organizations that relies on MEDIA support.
More than 400 European industry professionals, including most of Europe’s national film promotion bodies, numerous producers, talent agents and directors, as well as world sales groups, such as France’s Wild Bunch, London-based Protagonist Pictures and TrustNordisk from Denmark, have signed the letter.
It highlights the EFP’s efforts since it was founded 15 years ago to promote the distribution and marketing of European movies.
Among the EFP’s programs are the annual Shooting Stars event at the Berlin Film Festival, which highlights 10 up-and-coming European actors, and the industry umbrella office at the American Film Market, where the EFP provides screenings, a meeting point and marketing support for small and mid-sized European companies attending the film market.