Rio fest market going on the road

To promote potential for international co-productions

RIO DE JANEIRO -- The Festival do Rio market will take its show on the road next year with a conference in Europe and a traveling promotional tour of the United States tied to the annual Premiere Brazil event at New York's Museum of Modern Art in July.

Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival executive director and RioMarket director Walkiria Barbosa said Sunday that more information about the ventures will be announced early in 2009, but the goal will be to spread the word about the potential for international co-productions with Brazilian filmmakers. She said she expected the European conference will take place in the United Kingdom, though that has not yet been decided.

"It's very difficult for films in the Portuguese language unless they are very special, like 'Central Station' or 'City of God,' " Barbosa said. "The way forward for Brazilian producers is to seek co-producers in different countries to make films in English, and that's who we want to meet and talk to."

She said the Brazilian film industry aimed to speak not only to film industries in other countries but also Internet operators, telecom and audiovisual companies and television producers.

Barbosa made the comments at the 10th annual Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival, which has attracted big crowds despite torrential rain that caused blackouts in parts of the city on Saturday night.

The Coen Bros.' "Burn After Reading," Woody Allen's "Vicky Christina Barcelona," David Gordon Green's "Pineapple Express" and Saul Dibb's "The Duchess" were among films that have met with enthusiastic response from Rio audiences. Australian director Stephan Elliott's "Easy Virtue" also was a hit and was picked up for Latin American release by Sony Pictures Classics.

The market held no panel discussions on Sunday due to municipal elections, although the usual prohibition on the sale of alcohol on Election Day was suspended because of the festival, which continues through Thursday.
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