Warming up for Berlinale

The European Film Market starts next week as part of the Berlinale Film Festival. It has always been a very important place for the 72 project, primarily because we  have managed to do face-to-face business there, which is difficult at any other point of the year. The 72 in Melbourne began over a coffee in the Marriott in Berlin.

This year it is as important as ever to the 72. Whilst we’ve been busy developing a more ambitious project than ever before, we also carry bigger demands. These aren’t unreasonable, but they are a different kind of challenge to what we have been used to. The first is money (isn’t it always). Whilst there are lots of lovely people willing to volunteer to make a film in 72 hours for the sheer thrill of it, we need to be able to support the project economically purely and simply because many favours don’t exist on the third time of asking. It’s completely understandable. So we’re in Berlin for money…

I’m also there for the Talentcampus, which is really exciting. It is a series of meetings, masterclasses and all-round opportunity to get your films made, so this should be a big help.

I guess the point to make is that there are no guarantees at this point as to whether we’ll get to make another 72 or not. Each project has a period of precarious negotiation which changes the outlook every week. Whilst we are doing everything we can to get the project established, the fact remains that we either ‘take it to the next level’ or we don’t take it on at all. There seems little point as we’ve done it before, scraping around for pennies behind the sofa.

“Don’t be greedy” may be going through your head right now! I’m sad to say that the money we’re raising isn’t going into my pocket! It is for the costs of production which we’ve usually absorbed (to the detriment of our mental state) or it has been kindly sponsored (to the detriment of someone else’s mental state). However, we believe there is value in what we are doing and therefore we are hoping to get some shekels in the bank to make it happen.

I’ll spend most of this week targeting the people we’d like to meet once we are there. I’ll keep you posted on the progress as we go on…

James

berlinale

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