Rome fest: Less money, fewer problems?

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The reductions in the budget for this year's Rome Film Festival are by design, festival general director Francesca Via told The Hollywood Reporter on Thursday, adding that further reductions could be in store for the 2009 edition.

Earlier this month, it was revealed that the festival's third edition would have a bankroll of €15.5 million ($22.3 million), a reduction of about 12% from 2007. Contributions from various levels of government remained consistent, with most of the reduction coming from private-sector sponsorship.

Via said the reduction is aimed at reaching "sustainable" levels for the budget. She said that the 2009 festival is likely to see further reductions until the budget levels out at about €13.5 million ($19.4 million).

"It may sound like a paradox, but we're actually happy with the lower level," Via said. "This budget seems more prudent."

The most obvious change from last year will be fewer films. This year's festival will have about 68 official films screening, a big drop from 102 in 2007. (partialdiff)
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