Euro market ends with mixed results, feelings

Sales depend on office location

Location, location, location, ran the mantra that applied to this year's European Film Market, which ended Friday (HR 15).

The majority based at the Martin-Gropius-Bau and the fancy hotels headed home reporting brisk sales and good business levels, while those located at the Business Offices on Potsdammer Platz complained it was a mystery to most, with only light foot traffic.

The entire fifth floor of the EFM office location, barring one exhibitor, was prepping a letter of complaint to market organizers about the lack of signage, buyer awareness and isolation anxiety that peaked after being invited to the EFM opening party just hours before it kicked off.

But EFM co-directors Beki Probst and Karen Arikian were quick to defend the office location, which is only in its second year.

"There is no denying it is the second facility, but people were happy to book it," Arikian said.

For sellers and buyers trawling the hotel suites and Gropius, the market was a tale of strange rhythms but satisfying activity.

"It has been very slow," said one leading Korean sales agent. "I think its all a bit too spread out."

New York-based sales and finance house GreeneStreet Films said it had sold U.K. rights to Optimum Releasing for "The Nines".

GSFI president Ariel Veneziano said: "(EFM) started kind of slow then it heated up."

Fortissimo Films co-chairman Michael Werner reported strong sales on the Annie Liebowitz docu "Life Through a Lens," Martin Scorsese's Rolling Stones pic, and strong interest on Wong Kar Wai's "Ashes of Time: Redux."

First Look International president Stuart Ford described the market as having a strange rhythm. "I was expecting an upward spike at the weekend before it slowed but it has been extremely busy at the beginning, flattened out over the weekend and (became) busy again."