PHOTOS AND PRESS MATERIALS:
The main achievements of Russia at the Cannes Film Festival were the Grand Prix awarded to the film Hytti Nro. 6 by Juho Kuosmanen co-produced with Russia in the main competition program and the victory of Kira Kovalenko's film Unclenching The Fists in the Un Certain Regard section which is the first Grand Prix for Russian filmmakers in this competition program since 2008.
Svetlana Maksimchenko, Director of the Department of Cinematography and Digital Development of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation:
“Despite the pandemic, the Ministry of Culture decided to support the Russian Pavilion in Cannes this year, taking into account the wide representation of Russian projects in the Festival program and the focus on promoting and exporting Russian cinema to the international market. It was important for us to present not only films but also our actors, filming services and locations, government support measures for co-production and other opportunities Russia offers for international directors and producers. We are pleased with the phenomenal success of Russian cinema at the Cannes Film Festival and, on behalf of the Ministry of Culture of Russia, we congratulate all the participants and especially the winners."
Evgenia Markova, CEO of ROSKINO:
“This is the first prize of the Russian minority co-production in Cannes. The program launched by the Russian Ministry of Culture only two years ago has yielded quick results. The Grand Prix of the main competition, awarded to the film Hytti Nro.6, once again underlines the importance of the development of co-production initiatives. And we are already negotiating with three countries to sign new co-production agreements.
The main prize in the second most important section of the Cannes Film Festival Un Certain Regard awarded for the first time in more than 10 years to the film Unclenching The Fists by Kira Kovalenko speaks of the emergence of a new generation of Russian directors and interest in stories and projects from the regions of our country. This is an important signal to everyone who develops regional cinema and young talents."
Alexander Rodnyansky, producer of the film Unclenching The Fists:
“Unfortunately, Kira did not have time to return to the ceremony – the flight from Canada to Europe would have taken 16 hours. But having worked with her for over three years by now, I know exactly what she would say. First of all, she would thank her actors – professionals and amateurs – everybody who starred in the film. She would thank the wonderful film crew who worked with her in North Ossetia, a region of Russia that rarely appears on the screen. She would also thank her teacher, an outstanding director Alexander Sokurov, for introducing her to this profession. And of course, she would thank the Festival for the opportunity to hear her voice and the jury for such an assessment of her film."
Sergei Selyanov, producer of the film Hytti Nro. 6:
“I am glad that the film was highly appreciated by the critics, and we are sure that the Russian audience will also love this film when it is released. I am very happy about the success of the film and I am grateful to the very talented director Juho Kuosmanen and the entire international team. Hooray! And hurray to our good neighbourly relations with Finland."
Natalia Drozd, producer of the film Hytti Nro. 6:
“I am very happy for all of us, for the team, for the audience of the Cannes Film Festival, for the jury. Our movie celebrates tenderness, love, compassion and sympathy for people. It's great that this film won the Grand Prix because, being a great work of cinematography, it sends a very important message to all of us. An incredible reward and joy!"
The work of the Russian Pavilion at the 74th Cannes International Film Festival and the Marché Du Film international film market at Village International has also ended. For the 13th time, the Russian pavilion officially presented the country in Cannes, serving as a unified information centre for our filmmakers and a universal platform for promoting Russian cinema on the international market. The pavilion was organized with the support of the Cinema Fund and the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. During those nine days of work, it hosted more than 20 events in online and offline formats, which attracted many industry professionals from different countries.
During the Cannes Film Festival and the Marché du Film film market, various representatives of the global content industry have visited the Russian Pavilion including representatives of international film festivals (San Sebastian International Film Festival, Torino Film Festival, Berlinale-Berlin International Film Festival, Locarno Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival, Directors' Fortnight, Tribeca Film Festival, Warsaw Film Festival, Torino Film Festival, Canneseries and others); large industrial organizations from around the world (European Cinema Foundation Eurimages, organizations promoting French cinema in the world UniFrance and CNC, Israel Film Fund, World Film Institute, international forum When East Meets West, national cinematography centers of Germany, Greece, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, Latin American countries, the leading European organization for the development of producers’ trainings EAVE); international film companies from the USA, Canada, Great Britain, Germany, France, Sweden and others, as well as journalists from the world's leading media – Variety, Screendaily, Deadline, Hollywood Reporter, Paris Match, Die Welt, Le Monde, Huffpost, The Daily Telegraph, Numero and others.
The ROSKINO team discussed the formats of Russian presence in the main and business programs of the festivals Mar del Plata (Argentina), Guadalajara (Mexico), Black Nights (Estonia), as well as possibilities of co-production with the Israeli public and private funds, the Turkish Film Foundation and many other countries.
As part of the meetings with the curators of the leading film festivals, a selection of projects Focus on Festivals with the biggest festival potential was presented.
Barbara Wurm, Selection Consultant Berlinale:
“Focus on Festivals is a well-compiled and helpful guide for every festival selector. It combines practical information about new projects and helps to keep track of new films. I am delighted with this initiative. "
Lior Sasson, Development Director of the Israel Film Found:
‘Having the Russia - Israel filmmakers meeting at the Russian Pavilion was one of the most important activities we did in Cannes this year.
The group of decision-makers made the first contact in exploring ways to create new content between the two countries. While celebrating the first corporation in the form of the animation film by Ari Folman, the meeting allowed both sides to start drafting new partnerships in film production, education, animation and VR.
The soon to be signed co-production agreement will open the door for many projects that were conceived during our meeting in Cannes. The Israel Film Pavilion would like to thank Evgenia Markova and her great team for hosting the Israel film Industry for this event, and we look forward to continuing our partnerships in future film events.
Alexander Rodnyansky, producer:
“The Cannes Film Festival is, of course, primarily a cinema festival. But it is also the most important industrial event for filmmakers, determining the fate of the films demonstrated here. That is why professional support in promoting the project is so important. And we are grateful to the team of the Russian Pavilion and ROSKINO for this support, for organizing meetings with international colleagues."
Christopher Vourlias, journalist for Variety:
“I think there's been a lot of energy and dynamism around the Russian industry in the past few years, and we saw more of that in Cannes, with two films in competition and a host of others across the festival's other sections. Roskino deserves a lot of credit for boosting the visibility of the Russian industry on the global stage. There was a lot of activity around the Russian pavilion on the Croisette, and it felt like a natural extension of the work Roskino has been doing at other international festivals and markets, like EFM, as well as through tailored showcases like the Key Buyers Event. It's an exciting time for those of us who love world cinema to watch a new generation of Russian filmmakers continuing to build on such a rich moviemaking legacy, and it's encouraging to see an organization like Roskino putting so much time and effort into giving those filmmakers the spotlight they deserve.”
A unified export brand for the Russian content industry
Russian Content Worldwide (RCW)
One of the main events of the Russian Pavilion was the presentation of the new ROSKINO initiative - the single export brand of the Russian content industry Russian Content Worldwide (RCW). The mission of Russian Content Worldwide will be developing international cooperation ties and business cooperation, increasing the transparency of the Russian film industry and establishing communication between Russian players, whose work is focused on foreign markets, and an international audience interested in new names, original content and new perspectives in the field of film production.
Meeting of Russian and Israeli producers
One of the central events of the Russian Pavilion was the meeting of Russian and Israeli producers, dedicated to the expected signing of a Russian-Israeli co-production agreement in the fall of 2021. During the networking session, the producers of the two countries discussed the prospects for future cooperation, the process of collaborative filmmaking and other relevant topics. Lior Sasson, Development Director of the Israeli Film Foundation, and Evgenia Markova, Head of ROSKINO moderated the discussion. Among the Israeli producers, the meeting was attended by Eti Koen, Director of the Cinematography Department of the Ministry of Culture and Sports of Israel, Liza Shiloch Uzrad, Head of the Israeli Film Fund, Yoram Honig, Director of the Jerusalem Film Foundation, Aurit Zamir, Director of the Jerusalem Film Laboratory, Osnat Bukoftzer, Director of the Rabinovich Film Fund, Director Gesher Film Fund Ziv Naveh, director of the Sam Spiegel School of Film and Television Dana Blankstein Cohen. The Russian side was represented by the producers Alexander Rodnyansky, Artem Vasiliev, Natalia Drozd, Dmitry Litvinov, Victoria Lupik, Tamara Bogdanova, Maria Vogt and Mikhail Idov.
Russia as a promising location for filming.
Presentation of regional film commissions
The Russian Pavilion hosted a panel discussion dedicated to filming in Russia. Representatives of the leading film commissions spoke about the possibilities of film production in Russian regions for foreign producers and shared their experience and prospects of working with international projects. The discussion was attended by the head of the Department of Cinematography of the Ministry of Culture Svetlana Maksimchenko, the head of the Moscow Film Commission office Anastasia Zuenko and manager for international film projects and events of the Moscow Film Commission Ilya Bragin, Deputy Minister of Culture and Tourism of the Kaliningrad Region Denis Mironyuk, coordinator of international projects of the Union of Cinematographers of Karelia Alexey Rogozin. The discussion was moderated by the head of ROSKINO Evgenia Markova.
Discussion about the future of Russian actors on the world stage
At the Russian Pavilion, international casting directors and producers discussed the careers and future of Russian talent on the world stage in a panel discussion co-hosted by the Casting Bridge Community, a community for promoting English-speaking Russian actors abroad. The event was moderated by the head of ROSKINO Evgenia Markova and Russian actress Daria Pisareva.
In recent years, Russian talents have experienced great demand in international projects. Is this a short-term trend or a new wave of Russian actors entering the global film industry? The panellists were looking for an answer to this question with help of one of the leading casting directors of the international level, engaged in the selection of actors for the last 14 James Bond films, Debbie McWilliams, co-founder and agent of the Subtitle Talent Agency, representing both eminent and emerging actors from Europe, Steve Cash, actress, casting director and CEO of Duart Company, the first digital casting platform in Southeast Europe, Sanja Drakulić, actor Alexander Kuznetsov, Russian-Dutch actress Anastasia Reshetnikova and actress, producer, co-founder of Casting Bridge Julia Khamitova.
Round Table on Women in Film and Creative Industries
Another significant event at the Russian pavilion was the round table Women’s Cinema in Russia, held in partnership with the European Women’s Audiovisual Network (EWA), an organization that supports women in the industry and helps them establish professional contacts and share experience. The producers Natalia Drozd, Victoria Lupik, Tamara Bogdanova, director Ella Manzheeva, actress and director Svetlana Ustinova, ROSKINO CEO Evgenia Markova discussed the role of women in the traditionally "male" industries of cinema and content production, as well as the evolution of the term "female cinema" in Russia. The discussion was moderated by Tamara Tatishvili, EWA Strategy Director.
Presentation of VR technologies and the project Under the Pillow
This year, within the framework of the Cannes Film Festival, the Cannes XR - VeeR Future Award competition section was created, the program of which included the animated interactive VR work Under the Pillow by the Russian director and founder of the Russian VR Seasons initiative Georgy Molodtsov.
The presentation of this project took place in the Russian Pavilion. Georgy Molodtsov spoke about the cartoon, the potential for using VR technologies in Russia, and the prospects of international distribution. Molodtsov’s animation series is being produced by the Belarusian studio Feeling Digital. Developers are adapting the story for several formats that are convenient for showing in amusement parks, on mobile VR-glasses and in full-dome cinemas, as well as on smartphones using augmented reality.
Presentation of the Russian Film Festival
The presentation of the Russian Film Festival project was an important event for the Pavilion. The Russian Film Festival, organized by ROSKINO together with the Ministry of Culture, is helping to strengthen cultural ties with other countries and enhance Russia's integration into the global film industry. In 2020, more than 120 thousand people attended the Russian Film Festival in Brazil, Spain, Mexico and Australia. In 2021, the festival will be held in a hybrid format, combining online and offline events, organized in collaboration with the largest VOD platforms and international festivals. Since the beginning of the year, a series of Russian Film Festival screenings have been held in Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Kazakhstan. On July 12, the festival started in South Korea on the largest platform Home Choice, and the first hybrid project - offline integration into the Beijing International Film Festival and online screenings on one of the world's largest platforms iQIYI – will be held in China this August.
Russian films at the 74th Cannes Film Festival
In addition to the co-production film Hytti Nro. 6 directed by Juho Kuosmanen, the film Petrov’s Flu directed by Kirill Serebrennikov represented Russia in the official program of the 74th Cannes International Film Festival. In the Un Certain Regard section, along with Kira Kovalenko's film Unclenching The Fists, Alexey German Jr.'s film House Arrest was also demonstrated. In addition, Russia was represented by three more projects. The short film Postman by last year's graduate of GITR directed by Klim Tukaev won the prize at the Critique Week program. The animated VR series Under the Pillow, created by Georgy Molodtsov, took part in the Cannes XR competition program at the Marche du Film film market. The project of a new film directed by Ella Manzheeva White Road! was selected to the Atelier section of the Cinefondation program - for the first time in 15 years.
International projects with Russian participation were also presented in Cannes. Franco-Belgian war drama Mon Légionnaire with Russian actor Alexander Kuznetsov was included in the list of participants in the prestigious parallel program Directors Fortnight, and Alexander Rodnyansky's production project Where is Anna Frank? by Israeli director Ari Folman was shown at the festival’s non-