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Established 1995 filmfestivals.com serves and documents relentless the festivals community, offering 92.000 articles of news, free blog profiles and functions to enable festival matchmaking with filmmakers.

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International Film Festival Rotterdam kicked off

the International Film Festival Rotterdam has taken the initiative to create the Hubert Bals Fund Plus!, aimed at offering Dutch producers an opportunity to participate more in international film projects. The Netherlands Film Fund has made two hundred thousand euros available for the finance of co-productions with films awarded by the HBF for 2006. During the next Holland Festival (June 2-25, 2006 in Amsterdam), IFFR will be presenting a limited summer edition, June 15 – 18, of the film festival in Amsterdam. Pierre Audi, artistic director of the Holland Festival, is one of the five members of the VPRO Tiger Awards Jury. Hundreds of film makers are arriving in Rotterdam to present their films to the festival audiences. These include Jan Svankmajer, Hou Hsiao-hsien and Terry Gilliam.

VPRO Tiger Awards Jury
This year, the international jury that will select the three winners from the fourteen films in the VPRO Tiger Awards Competition is made up of Pierre Audi (artistic director of the Holland Festival and of the De Nederlandse Opera, the Netherlands), Paulo Branco (film producer, France), Lee Chang-Dong (film maker and former Minister of Culture, South Korea), Martin Rejtman (film maker and producer, Argentina) and Patrice Toye (film maker, Belgium).

Film makers expected to attend
During the 35th festival, which will open next Wednesday, some 370 film makers will arrive in Rotterdam: young talent selected for the competitions, the Sturm und Drang and ‘Hot Spots’ programmes, committed film makers from all over the world showing their films in the Time & Tide programme and master film makers from the Kings & Aces section. The most well known of these include Jan Svankmajer, Terry Gilliam, Hou Hsiao-hsien, the Quay Brothers, Raúl Ruiz, Carlos Reygadas, Bela Tarr, Abolfazl Jalili, Sharunas Bartas, Avi Mograbi and Vimukthi Jayasundara.

Special guest film makers will include Wanma-caidan, the first Tibetan feature film director, with THE SILENT HOLY STONES; French actor Louis Garrel, who plays one of the main roles in his father’s (Philippe
Garrel) highly praised LES AMANTS RÉGULIERS; Iranian directors Mohammad Shirvani (PRESIDENT MIR QANBAR) and Ali Raffi (FISH FALL IN LOVE); Rajat Kapoor, maker of MIXED DOUBLES, an Indian film that offers a strikingly open look at sexual relations; Kankuro Kudo from Japan, making his feature début with the delirious YAJI& KITA; Nicolas Winding Refn from Denmark, director of the PUSHER trilogy; John Maringouin from America, who gives a gripping portrait of his addict father in RUNNING STUMBLED and the delegations of young artists from Johannesburg, Vilnius and Mexico City in town for their part in the ‘Hot Spots’ programme focusing on these cities. The large turnout by makers of short films guarantees an extremely lively ‘Short: As Long As It Takes’ programme, from 26 through 30 January.

Hubert Bals Fund Plus!
IFFR’s Hubert Bals Fund supports film makers in developing countries with contributions at the stages of script development, post-production and distribution. Each year, between 20 and 40 films are finished that have received support from the Hubert Bals Fund. Hubert Bals Fund Plus! was established with the aim of giving Dutch producers an opportunity to cooperate more in international projects, as well as offering financial support to the Hubert Bals Fund projects at the production stage.

Producers of projects that have already received support from the Hubert Bals Fund can show interest in having a Dutch co-producer. During the film festival, the Hubert Bals Fund will arrange meetings between both parties. The Dutch producer who will co-finance can then submit a subsidy request to the Netherlands Film Fund for a contribution towards the production of the film. The Netherlands Film Fund is making 200,000 euros available for these applications in 2006 and will pay out up to a maximum of 50,000 euros. Approximately half of the films made with support from the Hubert Bals Fund have European co-producers. IFFR wishes to put the expertise and extensive network of its Hubert Bals Fund to provide Dutch producers with access to and stimulate cooperation with international, high-quality artistic film productions.

Cooperation with Holland Festival
The Holland Festival and IFFR have combined their desire and aim of presenting groundbreaking (film) art in the form of a limited summer edition the film festival in Amsterdam. During the Holland Festival, IFFR will be organizing, from June 15 up to and including 18, screenings of the very latest films from next spring, in locations including the Westergasfabriek and the Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, as well as a retrospective film and exhibition programme dedicated to the remarkable and imaginative oeuvre of England’s Stephen and Timothy Quay. All of which, as in Rotterdam, will be supported by the presence of the film makers, public interviews and discussions.

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Chatelin Bruno
(Filmfestivals.com)

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