Russian Film Body ROSKINO Heads to London

The state film promotion organization will open a UK office, two years after it branched out to Los Angeles.

BERLIN -- Russia's state film promotion body ROSKINO is to open an office in London.

The organization, which supports the sales and distribution of Russian films worldwide, said the London office would facilitate new opportunities industry professionals from both countries.

The move takes place during a year that marks the UK-Russia Year of Culture, an initiative designed to foster cultural exchange and collaboration between people, institutions and governments.

The new office, which comes two years after ROSKINO established a presence in Los Angels, will support a range of activities including promoting co-productions, showcasing Russian films at British festivals and markets and vice versa and expanding the presence of Russian films on British VOD platforms.

The organization plans to run industry-focused events and to develop links between Russian and UK film schools.

Founded in 1924 as Sovexportfilm, in Soviet times it had a network of 54 international offices, including until the early 1990s, a London bureau.

ROSKINO-UK will be headed by Anna Ryasik, currently the body's director of international festivals and markets.

"The new office will enable us to expand activities in the UK and Europe," Ryasik said. "London is seen as the European capital of business and enterprise. This is an important and exciting next step in ROSKINO's international strategy for the industry."

Katya Mtsitouridze, Roskino chief executive, added: "Opening our first international office in Los Angeles two years ago marked a gear-change in generating visibility for Russian cinema and has helped us to facilitate links in the US for Russian films and filmmakers. The UK is home to a vibrant industry but also acts as a magnet for international filmmakers and the arts as a whole, which is creatively and commercially exciting for Russian film and television.