1st July 2005
The MEDIA Salles’ “European Producer
of the Year" goes to Elda Ferri
The Award to Elda Ferri,
producer of some of the most outstanding films on the horizon of Italian
cinema, was the central focus of Italian Cinema Worldwide,
the new initiative by MEDIA Salles, conceived along the same, well-established
lines as Focus on Europe, in order to highlight a particular aspect
of Europe’s rich film-making tradition, Italian cinema. Realised
thanks to the support of the Italian Government, this project will bring
the latest Italian productions to the foreground at markets that include
those reserved up to now almost exclusively for US productions, such
as Kino Expo in Russia and CineAsia in China.
Elda Ferri, producer of films of the calibre of Life Is
Beautiful by Roberto Benigni, Gianni Amelio’s The House
Keys and Roberto Faenza’s Jona Who Lived in the Whale
and Sostiene Pereira, recalled how the success of
her films went hand in hand with “the profound understanding and
the strong human and cultural relationship that has arisen with artists
to whom the Italian – and not only Italian – cinema owes
a good deal: Nicoletta Braschi, Roberto Faenza and Roberto Benigni”.
Enthusiastic applause for the trailers of past successes, presented
to the professional players from all over Europe who were present in
the theatre, along with a short preview of Benigni’s latest film
The Tiger and The Snow, which will be in Italian cinemas on
14 October this year.
Elisabetta Brunella, Secretary General of MEDIA Salles, commented: “from
several quarters, there emerges a demand by exhibitors from all countries
for a greater variety of films, able to draw spectators who do not identify
fully with the offer from Hollywood. As recent surveys show that, in
the United States, too, a significant sector of audiences believes there
is a drop in the quality of films made in the USA, interesting prospects
open up for Italian and European cinema”.
MEDIA Salles’ Focus on Europe closed yesterday
with another important event: the presentation of the "International
Star Award" to Bruno Ganz during the “Final Luncheon
and Awards Ceremony”. Of Swiss-German origin, with a significant
theatrical career and many film successes, including his role in Bread
and Tulips by Silvio Soldini, Ganz recently played Adolf Hitler
in Downfall. A film that opened up old wounds and sparked off
debate, this has been one of the few German films to seriously cross
national boundaries, being released in as many as 31 countries, totalling
over 5 million spectators in the countries of the European Union in
2004 and receiving an Academy Award nomination as Best Foreign Language
Mette Schramm, President of the Danish exhibitors’ association
and member of the MEDIA Salles’ Executive Committee, presented
the Award to Bruno Ganz with the following words: “with this Award,
MEDIA Salles and Cinema Expo wish to thank you and acknowledge before
exhibitors from all over Europe, your exceptional interpretation in
the film Downfall which in my country, Denmark, as in many
other European countries, has had great and unexpected success: in fact
the film was at the top of box office ratings for as many as 16 weeks
and is still in seventh place. Congratulations!”.
During Italian Cinema Worldwide,
MEDIA Salles also distributed a cd-card containing 10 trailers of internationally
distributed Italian productions.
In the “Focus on Europe”
section of the website (www.mediasalles.it)
information is published on all the films of which MEDIA Salles screened
trailers at Cinema Expo, as well as on the European
Film of the Year, Merry Christmas.
Expo International is the traditional meeting for European
exhibitors, which brings together over 1,200 professional operators
from all countries. The event includes seminars on different aspects
of the cinema industry and the presentation of films about to be released.
The programme of Cinema Expo International includes an exhibition of
equipment and services for cinemas, from theatre design to the most
technologically advanced products.
The MEDIA Salles project
operates within the framework of the European Union's MEDIA
Programme, with the support of the Italian Government.
The end objective of MEDIA Salles is to foster theatrical distribution
of European audiovisual products. This aim is pursued both by high profile
campaigns involving Europe's cinema exhibitors and by initiatives to
raise the visibility of European productions with industry players and
potential audiences, creating specialized information channels on a
global scale. Thus the current initiatives from MEDIA Salles dovetail
in a program with a triple focus - training, promotion and information
- and maximum combined effect.
Via Soperga, 2 – I-20127 Milan
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