Italy's Piedmont region sets film fund

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ROME -- The Italian region of Piedmont's announcement of the creation of Italy's largest regional film fund joins a growing trend to establish such funds in Italy, which now have a total value estimated at more than $500 million.

The Piedmont-based fund, which was announced Tuesday at the Berlin Film Festival, will be worth some €25 million ($32.5 million) per year. About 40% of that will come from the region itself, with the rest raised from participating banks and other financial institutions.

The money -- which will handed out in blocks ranging from €2 million ($2.6 million) to €8 million ($10.4 million) to projects spending at least a quarter of their budgets in Piedmont -- is the largest regional film fund in Italy. Only two national funds are bigger: a €90 million ($117 million) fund backed by the national government and a fund worth €35 million ($46 million) from state-owned RAICinema.

As of now, a total of at least 26 regional funds from 14 of Italy's 20 regions are operating. Added to national funds, such as a recently announced fund worth at least €2 million ($2.6 million) to attract Indian filmmakers to Italy, the total value of all the funds is reported to be worth more than €400 million ($520 million) -- more than at any other point.
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