Deals few, far between at TIFFCOM


TOKYO -- More people came through the doors at TIFFCOM on Tuesday than at the same point last year, but most are finding deals hard to come by at the event that is squeezed between the Pusan International Film Festival and the American Film Market.

Organizers said attendance was up slightly from last year's 5,099, and exhibitors report that, after a quiet start to the second day, it looked busier than last year.

However, with Pusan having just wrapped Oct. 12 and AFM kicking off Oct. 31, some question whether there is enough business to go around.

"There are so many festivals now, it's just one after another. I wonder if there's enough content to fill them," said Shiori Takata of Japanese powerhouse Toei. "It seems like everyone is mostly taking the same stuff from festival to festival.

"We were in Pusan, and it was meeting after meeting. It's a little different here at TIFFCOM. I think people are coming here with the intention of buying, and there's still another day to go, but we haven't signed as many deals as we'd like. I think buyers are holding off until AFM," Takata said.

Tomoko Suzuki, head of international sales at Kadokawa Pictures, which has its China co-production "Crossing Over" in competition, believes it's a tough market everywhere.

"There are more people than last year but less deals getting signed. The DVD market especially, is tough everywhere, so buyers are really thinking hard before signing up," Suzuki said.