On 11 April in Cannes (France), one of the biggest international markets for audiovisual and digital content, MIPTV, came to a close. This year, more than 9,000 professionals and 3,000 companies took part in the market.

Together with the MIPTV international content market, this year marked the second annual International Cannes Series Festival. For the first time, a Russian television series made it into the concourse program: "Epidemic" (dir. Pavel Kostomarov) from TNT PREMIER Studios. The first episode was presented with great success at the festival by producers Valeriy Fedorovich and Evgeniy Nishikov, actresses Viktoriya Isakova and Maryana Spivak, and screenwriter Roman Kantor. The Canneseries competition featured the best new series from Germany, Spain, Norway, Japan, and other countries.


ROSKINO - Made in Russia

ROSKINO, with the support of the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation as well as the Russian Export Center, provided for the representation of film and television production companies of varying formats at MIPTV, presenting their content on four platforms at the market. The two unified stands for ROSKINO – Russian Cinema Worldwide, under the Russian Export Center's Made in Russia brand, presented projects from 15 Russian companies to international buyers. These brands included Central Partnership, Soyuzmultfilm, All Media, WIZART, GK Bazelevs (Digital), RWV, SENEmedia, AA Studio, IGMAR, and others. Stands for Riki and Signal Media were organized separately.

Ekaterina Mtsituridze, CEO of ROSKINO:

"Russian companies that presented their content for sale at the ROSKINO – Russian Cinema Worldwide stands, under the Russian Export Center's Made in Russia brand, noted a stable interest from buyers at MIPTV, despite the decline in overall activity. In my opinion — which is shared by many of my colleagues in Russia who visit the television markets in Cannes both in the spring and autumn — it is worth focusing on the MIPCOM market, which takes place in October and which will be better attended by buyers from Asian and North American companies. In terms of promoting our national content on the international market, the most important features are stability, collaboration with permanent partners, and the development of new, promising relationships. I am glad that more and more companies from Russia understand the value of international sales in monetizing their projects, which requires regular collaboration with our foreign colleagues. The international markets are open to new, talented players."

Wizart presented shows at Cannes, including "The Snow Queen: Keepers of Wonders" (dir. Alexey Zamyslov), as well as new episodes of the animated series "Yoko." The company presented material from their new feature-length films to potential co-production partners. These are projects already in the production stage: animated interpretations of Pushkin's poem, "Ruslan and Lyudmila", and the Brothers Grimm tale, "Hansel and Gretel."

Yuri Moskvin, CEO of Wizart:

"Working at MIPTV as part of ROSKINO's joint stand is an important step in promoting our shows, 'The Snow Queen: Keepers of Wonders ' and 'Yoko'. We hope that we will be able to announce new deals already at the autumn TV viewing in Cannes. During the television market, we learned that the third part of our 'Snow Queen' franchise was the best-selling Russian film in foreign release in all of history! We achieved this result thanks to a limited French-language release in Canada. In parallel, we are preparing for a French release of 'The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands.'"

All Media presented new projects from the Yellow, Black, and White company at MIPTV: "Gold Diggers", "Ms Sweet", "Fitness" and "Grand," and the second season of "Bar "Talk it up", a web series from the MIM film company that's become a hit online. Buyers from China, the United States, Germany, and other key territories expressed an active interest in "Gold Diggers" and "Ms Sweet" as ready-mades, while "Bar "Talk it up" was of more interest as a format.

Zhanna Shakhshayeva, head of the international division of All Media:

"In our opinion, the market this year became more compact, but at the same time remained effective from a sales perspective. 'Gold Diggers', a new and unique project for Russian audiences, was a hit with international buyers as well. They expressed interest in comedy shows like 'Ms Sweet', 'Fitness' and 'Grand,' which once again refuted the opinion that humor is local. 'Bar "Talk it up' showed its worth a long time ago as an excellent story for a remake, and we are in talks with international production companies about the creation of international versions of the show."

Soyuzmultfilm presented their animation projects at the television market. International buyers saw the comedy-adventure series "Prostokvashino" (dir. Mikhail Soloshenko, Evgeniya Zhirkova, Anna Kuzina), a continuation of the cult-classic trilogy created in the 80s, as well as a new series, "The Pirate School" (dir. Aleksey Lebedev, Dzhangir Suleymanov) and an animated sitcom about the adventures of a city boy, Petya, and his imaginary friend, The Wolf: "Petya and Wolf" (dir. Aleksey Lebedev).

Yuliana Slashcheva, Chairman of the Board of Soyuzmultfilm:

"This year, projects from Soyuzmultfilm were fully represented for the first time at the largest international audiovisual content market, MIPTV, and attracted interest from partners in Europe and Asia. The potential for distributing 'Prostokvashino' and 'Petya and Wolf' were discussed with a series of European companies, while 'Petya and Wolf' also interested our colleagues in China. Besides this, companies from Central and Eastern Europe expressed interest in purchasing programs of short films from our company."

Central Partnership presented its catalog of television and film projects at MIPTV, as well as animation. Among its new flagship pictures are "Billion" (dir. Roman Prygunov) and "Baba Yaga: Terror of the Dark Forest" (dir. Svyatoslav Podgayevskiy).

Katerina Pshenitsyna, director of the international sales department of Central Partnership:

"Central Partnership wrapped up its participation in MIPTV, having conducted more than 30 meetings with partners and distributors from Eastern and Central Europe, China, South Korea, Japan, and Scandinavia. At the moment, we can note that the main interest of TV channels is directed towards the series from our catalog, and specifically at 'Gogol,' produced by TV3 and Sreda, and the 'Bolshoi' mini-series from director Valery Todorovsky. Soon, we will be able to announce the deals that we have closed as a result of the market."

Timur Bekmambetov's company, GK Bazelevs (Digital), presented a catalog of its projects in Cannes, among which are new films: the animated series "Trailblazers" (dir. Konstantin Shchekin) and the war series "Thick Armor " (dir. Yuriy Leyzerov).

Valeriya Dobrolyubova, head of sales at GK Bazelevs (Digital):

"Bazelevs visits MIPTV regularly. This year, there were noticeably fewer partners at the market, and the number of partners from Asian companies also decreased. Nevertheless, we met with a number of our regular clients: television channels from Eastern Europe (Bulgaria), distributors from Central Europe (France, Germany), and distributors from China and Japan. In demand are relicensed franchises like 'Yolki,' as well as other films from our library. We can hold our partners' interest with the help of new installments: for example, 'Yolki 7' in the 'Yolki' series. In addition, we announced a new project to our clients, with the working title 'Devyatayev,' which we presented as part of the 2019 Fond Kino pitching session."

AA Studio showcased the new animated children’s series at MIPTV, Rabbit’s 10 (directed by Sviatoslav Ushakov and Vladimir Sakov), Trains (directed by Aleksey Kotenochkin) and Woof-Meow (directed by Aleksey Kotenochkin). The other presented projects were The Princess and the Dragon (directed by Vasily Rovensky) and Squad Go Wild (directed by Igor Veishtagin).

AA Studio has secured a host of international deals and arrangements with distributors from China, Italy, Latin America and the Benelux countries.

Ruben Guzalian, Producer of AA Studio:

“Despite the fact that the overall market is declining, our business has been quite successful as far as the preliminary results are concerned. For MIPTV we had two tasks in mind. The first task was to find distributors for an already existing content, and the second one was to find partners for co-production. We have achieved positive results on both of those tasks. Right after MIPTV we pursued negotiations with some companies we had met, and we are now actively working on transforming possible perspectives into real deals.”

Riki Group presented 15 animated children’s series at MIPTV KikoRiki, BabyRiki, PinCode, Tina & Tony, Tommy the Little Dragon, My Toy Panda, Weatherville, Liry & Taya, The Kameleons, Forest Keepers, Beardy Bodo, The Question Club, The Amazing Spoilers, Christmas Academy and Above the Ceiling.

Before the market opening Riki Group had struck a deal with a German distributor Studio 100, which acquired the rights to translate 52 episodes of PinCode on Sky JUNIOR TV channel in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Lichtenstein.

4Screens, the largest distributor and producer of kids focused intellectual properties in “let’s play” segment under the umbrella of Riki Group, has inked a deal with Lagardere for acquiring digital distribution rights to the popular animated film Sonic Boom in Russia. Sonic Boom is based on a worldwide known video game Sonic the Hedgehog.

Diana Yurinova, VP of international business development for Riki Group:

“Thanks to the changes in organizational structure of our Group as well as to the consolidation of a large number of projects in the international catalogue under the Riki Group’s management we felt restricted in a general booth. We decided to expand. With the support of Russian Export Center (REC) we participated at MIPTV with our own booth, RIKI GROUP/Made in Russia. Over the last two-three years our brand awareness and relevance have grown, an ever bigger number of foreign companies are reaching to us with different partnership proposals. Not so long ago Sky JUNIOR TV channel has snapped up the rights for our animated series PinCode. In June children’s series Krosh and Panda, a co-production with Chinese state television broadcaster CCTV Animation, will be aired. We are working on closing the new deals, and we will talk about them soon. On April 10th our new animated feature film KikoRiki: Déjà vu was broadcast in South Korea”.

At MIPTV, SENEmedia company premiered its film Milkformadness, (directed by Sergei Kavtaradze) and a documentary Blank Page (directed by Aina Meredova).

Evgeny Antonov, Producer and Co-founder of SENEmedia:

“ROSKINO’s booth Made in Russia as a promotional and sales tool is a perfect example of the “outside” matching the “inside”. We held over 80 meetings. South Korea showed interest in arthouse cinema and set their initial offer at $40 000. The following discussion and meeting will take place in Moscow. We have entered into an agreement with a large telecommunications corporation in France and secured 25% of revenue from every subscriber. We will go over the details with them during our next meeting in the US. A German TV company was interested in the documentaries. A preliminary agreement was set at 3000 euros a month, we are discussing the details now. We also entered into negotiations with other potential partners that we had met during the market.”

IGMAR company presented three films at the television market in Cannes, a historical crime story Contribution (directed by Sergei Snezhkin), a comedy Girl with a Scythe (directed by Olga Popova) and a historical drama The Cry of Silence (directed by Vladimir Potapov).

Margarita Korneva, Director General of the IGMAR company:

“We are working on making content packages for the next season. I would like to point out that we are now arranging TV air time slots for the series Faster Than Time. This is a big project based on unique archival material about a famous Soviet shipbuilder Rostislav Alexeyev. The series not only gives us accuracy-o-meters and historical context of that time period (as the story unfolds during four decades), but also emphasizes on secret developments and confrontation between Soviet and foreign intelligence services. Those are the themes that always preoccupied people’s minds. We received positive feedbacks on The Cry of Silence, a story set during the Siege of Leningrad. We started negotiations with broadcasters from Slovenia, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and South Korea. It is quite interesting that TV channels in near abroad are open towards new trends and are more eager to broadcast the content that Russian market is hesitant to air. An interesting example of that would be broadcast of Psychos starring Kristina Asmus on Estonian TV, or a premiere of Patent in Kazakhstan.”

RUSSIAN WORLD VISION company powered up the sales of family fantasy The House Elf (directed by Evgeny Bedarev) that was already licensed in German-speaking territories. The film has already hit the screens in Cyprus and will be soon released in UAE. We are pursuing negotiations with buyers from France, Italy, Spain, Czech, Slovakia, China, United States, Canada, Turkey and Latin America. RWV received a proposal to acquire the rights for the film Pain Threshold in French-speaking territories. This deal is almost signed. Other buyers from China, Japan, German-speaking countries, Italy, Spain and South Korea are also interested in this film. RWV also discussed the potential of two films that are in a pre-production stage, The Forest (directed by Evgeny Puzyrevsky) and The Locked Door (directed by Arseny Siukhin). The rights to both films were already sold to Vietnam and pitched to Great Britain, Japan, South Korea, Latin America and other territories. The company portfolio also features The Big Deal (directed by Mikhail Raskhodnikov), Follow Your Dream (directed by Antonina Ruzhe), All Or Nothing (directed by Dmitry Suvorov), Temporary Difficulties (directed by Mikhail Raskhodnikov), Gazgolder. Clubaret (directed by Ivan Kursky). A few companies that acquire international airlines and TV channels in Eastern Europe have expressed their interest in above mentioned films.

The sales of a thriller Break (directed by Tigran Saakian) powered up at MIPTV by another signed deal licensing the rights to broadcast in Latin America. The film was released in Germany, the rights were then sold to Hungary, Japan, Vietnam, South Korea and now the negotiations are held with China, Great Britain, France, Italy, Spain, Slovakia and Turkey. A war film Tankers (directed by Konstantin Maksimov) was sold to Japan, South Korea, French- and German-speaking countries, Great Britain and Scandinavian countries. In Cannes RWV have finalized the deal with American and Canadian buyers.

The animation studio 100 Kilowatt presented the animated series Eager Beaver (directed by Aleksey Lukianchinkov), Homies (directed by Viktor Azeev), and a documentary Microstories (directed by Yulia Koroleva).

Signal Media company showcased at the market in Cannes their animated series for kids from the Parovoz Studio, Cutie Cubies, Fantasy Patrol and Heroes of Envell. They also presented documentaries Planet of the Horses, Guide to the Universe and Distorted facts.

Ivan Tchulkov, Marketing Deputy Director of Signal Media company:

“For Signal Media this MIPTV has been a third television market, and equally successful. Along with the new episodes of already known to a professional public animated series and documentaries our company also presented brand-new projects that gained interest of the buyers worldwide. Those projects are the science education program Distorted facts, historical series The Nation Treasures as well as the project that answers the most common questions about space, The Guide to the Universe. As far as the animation is concerned, the flagship product presented at the market was the animated series The Cutie Cubies. MIPTV for Signal Media is the key content market, where year by year we see an increasing relevance of our projects and sign important deals. This year was not an exception, the buyers from Hungary, Thailand, Portugal, Balkan Islands and countries in MENA region showed strong interest to our content.”

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Natalia Adamova ROSKINO Press Relations

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