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Über dieses Buch

This volume offers an up-to-date analysis of film and television co-production in Europe. It brings together the voices of policy professionals, industry practitioners and media industry scholars to trace the contours of a complex practice that is of increasing significance in the global media landscape. Analysis of the latest production statistics sits alongside interviews with producers and the critical evaluation of public film policies. The volume incorporates contributions from representatives of major public institutions—Eurimages, the European Audiovisual Observatory and the European Commission—and private production companies including the pan-European Zentropa Group. Policy issues are elucidated through case studies including the Oscar-winning feature film Ida, the BAFTA-winning I am not a Witch and the Danish television serial Ride Upon the Storm. Scholarly articles span co-development, co-distribution and regional cinemas as well as emerging policy challenges such as the digital single market. The combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches, and the juxtaposition of industry and scholarly voices, provides a unique perspective on European co-production that is information-rich, complex and stimulating, making this volume a valuable companion for students, scholars, and industry professionals.



Chapter 1. Introduction: European Film and Television Co-production

This chapter provides an overview of the field of European film and television co-production and outlines the themes and methodological approaches employed within the volume European Film and Television Co-production: Policy and Practice. It describes the policy-driven European co-production model, focusing both on its historical evolution (emergence of official co-productions and proliferation of co-production treaties), and explores current developments triggered by recent tax incentives, non-official and TV co-productions, as well as digital media platforms. Furthermore, the chapter points to major methodological and theoretical gaps in the existing scholarship. To address those gaps, the chapter proposes a research methodology that would allow scholars to move closer to policy makers and practitioners, ensuring more cross-sectoral dialogue in researching co-productions.
Julia Hammett-Jamart, Petar Mitric, Eva Novrup Redvall

Chapter 2. Statistical Overview: Production, Co-production and Circulation

The chapter provides a statistical snapshot of key production, co-production and circulation trends in the European film industry. Two different sets of figures were used for the analysis. On the one hand, the data provided by the national film centres/statistical centres of each country were used to determine production volume within each country, in the EU and in Europe. The second set of figures was produced using Lumière, the European Audiovisual Observatory’s database for theatrical admissions. It was used to carry out the analysis of the interaction between countries for majority and minority co-productions, as well as to establish links between production and market share.
Julio Talavera

Policy and Practice of Co-production: Scholarly Voices


Chapter 3. Official Co-production: Policy Instruments and Imperatives

The practice of co-production occurs at the nexus of national and international policy jurisdictions, between cultural and commercial policy imperatives, pitting the reflex to protect against the desire to expand. As such it unsettles many preconceived notions about national cinema. This article focuses on the particular type of co-production which most embodies these points of tension—official co-production. It explains the complex, multi-dimensional policy framework within which official co-production occurs, the challenges it raises for public policy and the manner in which these are negotiated by industry partners.
Julia Hammett-Jamart

Chapter 4. The European Co-production Treaties: A Short History and a Possible Typology

The objective of this chapter is to provide an analysis of the fundamental reasoning behind European co-production treaties by looking back at its historical development and by proposing a possible industry-based typology of the treaties. In doing so, it endeavors to answer a seemingly simple question: In which way do co-production treaties affect collaboration between European producers?
Petar Mitric

Chapter 5. From Co-productions to ‘Co-distributions’? Re-evaluating Distribution Policies for European Film

Drake explores the under-researched relationship between European film production and distribution, and examines a range of European policies designed to support film distribution, including digital and video-on-demand (VOoD)/Over-the-Top (OTT) distribution. Significant focus has been placed on understanding production in European cinema; however, there has been a lack of scholarly analysis of distribution. The article offers an analysis of MEDIA programme support for distribution, presenting data across participating countries, and highlights differential forms of subsidies for pan-European film distribution. It concludes with an analysis of two recent European initiatives to support cross-border digital distribution: Walk This Way (WtW) and The TIDE Experiment, and considers how alternative forms of distribution across national boundaries (‘co-distributions’) might reach wider audiences through a combination of traditional and digital distribution platforms.
Philip Drake

Chapter 6. European Co-productions in a Digital Single Market: EUtopia or Dystopia?

The European Commission’s Digital Single Market strategy has sparked heated debate in the film industry. The key ambition of the strategy is to break down national silos online and facilitate cross-border access to digital content. The Commission’s vision runs counter to the way that co-productions are financed in Europe, and the film industry therefore warns that a DSM will rip up their entire business model. This chapter examines the arguments on both sides of the debate by employing Fairclough and Fairclough’s Political Discourse Analysis: A Method for Advanced Students (London: Routledge, 2012). The results show that the disagreement primarily arises over whether or not the existing film model can adapt to the rapid technological changes. The debate also echoes earlier quarrels over the film industry’s inherent tension between commerce and creativity.
Nina Vindum Rasmussen

Chapter 7. The Emergence of Pan-European Film Studios and Its Implications for Co-production Studies and Policy

The last decade has seen an unprecedented wave of corporate development in the European film and television industries, with several major companies becoming vertically and horizontally integrated while also simultaneously expanding into international sales and distribution markets. Such changes fundamentally alter the landscape of the continent’s media industries, which have up to now been characterized by national and linguistic fragmentation and distinct separations between production and distribution. This chapter provides an overview of these historical changes, highlighting relevant developments at firms such as Studiocanal, Pathé and Wild Bunch, among others, and examines the implications of these changes for Europe’s co-production policy regime, which has long been predicated on the need to overcome the fragmentation of the European industries.
Christopher Meir

Chapter 8. International Co-production of Nordic Television Drama: The Case of Ride Upon the Storm

The production of high-end series is expensive and with limited national audiences in the Nordic countries only the licence-fee financed public service broadcasters have traditionally ventured into television drama in the Nordic languages. In the mid 2010s, this started changing, partly because of the international outreach and sales of serials such as Forbrydelsen/The Killing (2007–2012) and Borgen (2010–2013). This development incited new players to move into the television drama arena and brought about a new focus on international co-production in the Nordic television landscape. This chapter explores some of these recent changes through a qualitative case study of the Danish-French co-production set-up behind the high-end drama serial Herrens veje/Ride Upon the Storm (2017–), focusing on the perceptions of strengths and challenges as well as questions of creative control in this particular set-up among the Danish partners (The Danish Broadcasting Corporation (DR) and SAM Productions).
Eva Novrup Redvall

Chapter 9. Breaking through the East-European Ceiling: Minority Co-production and the New Symbolic Economy of Small-Market Cinemas

This chapter combines questions about the structural position that minority co-production occupies within the Czech screen industry ecology and about local producers as its key agency. It starts with a picture of minority co-production vis-à-vis other international “production technologies” and with reconstructing producers’ cautionary discourse on majority co-production. After providing basic structural industry and policy analysis, it switches to day-to-day collaborative processes as seen by the local independent producers, focusing on their strategic thinking and lived realities. It asks about the role of knowledge transfer and symbolic capital accumulation on one hand, and about the new power hierarchies and barriers emerging from such transnational production contexts on the other.
Petr Szczepanik

Chapter 10. The Regional Film Fund as Co-production Crusader: The Case of Film i Väst

A focus in this paper is the issue of possible over-production of European films, as spelled out or implied in a number of reports, chapters, books and doctoral dissertations on European cinema during the last decade. Specifically, the activities of the Swedish/Scandinavian co-producer/regional film fund/public company Film i Väst will come under scrutiny. The fund has enabled larger production volumes in Sweden, Scandinavia and Northern Europe during the last two decades. A pivotal query is therefore how the examination of the production activities of an individual regional film fund may illuminate a larger context marked by increasing production and co-production of European films, despite the circumstance that signs of increasing demand are difficult to detect.
Olof Hedling

Chapter 11. The Many Enemies of Co-productions in Italy: Moviegoers, Broadcasters, Policy-Makers and Half-Hearted Producers

The chapter investigates the reasons why Italy plays a marginal role in international co-productions. The author identifies four stakeholders that discourage co-productions: (a) moviegoers, who basically prefer 100% national films or US movies; (b) broadcasters, who are unwilling to finance-release-schedule risky films; (c) policymakers, who are more interested into attracting film shoots and promoting Italian executive producers for foreign films (through local funds & tax incentives) than into favouring co-productions; and (d) Italian producers themselves, who are not brave enough to explore new production patterns. For all these reasons, the number of international co-productions with Italy is stable and has not been influenced by the evolutions of national/local laws of the past few years. Of course, virtuous exceptions exist, as Paolo Sorrentino’s films demonstrate.
Marco Cucco

Chapter 12. European Co-productions and Greek Cinema since the Crisis: “Extroversion” as Survival

This chapter explores the rise of co-productions in Greek cinema since 2010. It argues that while co-productions are not new in Greece, a combination of factors ranging from the reduced national funds for production as a result of the crisis, to the increased international visibility of Greek cinema in film festivals, has led to a recent intensification of co-production activity in the country. Using both quantitative (data analysis) and qualitative (interviews) methods, the chapter demonstrates the role of local and European/global factors in contributing to this rise. It focuses mainly to the emergence in Greece of a new generation of producers professionally trained in building European co-productions, who consider the adoption of an “extrovert”, Europeanised, production culture to be a matter of (Greek cinema’s) survival.
Lydia Papadimitriou

Chapter 13. Exporting the French Co-production Model: Aide aux cinémas du monde and Produire au Sud

This chapter examines how the Aide aux cinemas du monde fund and the Produire au Sud workshop aim at strengthening France’s central position in the co-production of world cinemas. The Aide aux cinemas du monde provides funding to French co-producers of films from all over the world, while the Produire au Sud workshop, linked to the Festival des 3 Continents in Nantes, works towards developing cooperation between European film professionals and emerging filmmakers from the South. Drawing on an analysis of film policy documents and data, field observation and recent film festival studies, this chapter investigates how both initiatives support co-production, in parallel to developing and exporting professional practices and discourses that shape the co-production culture developed in France since the 1980s.
Ana Vinuela

Policy and Practice of Co-production: Industry Voices


Chapter 14. ‘Official Co-production in the EU: The Role of Eurimages’—an interview with Roberto Olla

This chapter constitutes an interview with the executive director of the Council of Europe’s film funding arm, Eurimages, Roberto Olla. Olla holds a PhD in European Law from the European University Institute, Florence, and has previously worked within the MEDIA programme of the European Union. In this interview he outlines the objectives and operation of Eurimages, the impact of co-production on content and also addresses some of the challenges facing European co-productions today.
Julia Hammett-Jamart

Chapter 15. Digital Single Market for Audiovisual Content: Utopia or Win-Win for All?

This article arises from the author’s active participation in the development of EU Digital Single Market Strategy. It explains the European Commission’s attempt to balance the interests of consumers, producers and service providers in the area of cross-border access to audiovisual content and explores co-production as a potential model of European trans-national co-operation that may usefully inform future policy developments
Anna Herold

Chapter 16. The Impact of Regional Film Funds on the European Co-production Model

This chapter provides an insight into the role of regional film funds within the European co-production model. It first looks into how the regional film funds operate and shows the diversity of their funding policy. The second part of the chapter, however, investigates how regional film funds directly and indirectly nurture the European co-production model both in terms of production and policy.
Charlotte Appelgren

Chapter 17. Minority Co-production: Insights from MEDICI

Co-production implies that there is a majority producer who has initiated the project and one or several minority co-producers who are involved at a later stage. In this chapter, I would like to share some of the insights that have arisen from MEDICI workshops in relation to “minority co-production”, a particular type of official co-production where the financial and creative contribution of one partner is significantly less than another. As the chapter will show, to be a minority co-producer involves certain risks but also numerous advantages.
Joëlle Levie

Chapter 18. ‘Co-development Initiatives in Europe’—an interview with Isabelle Fauvel

Isabelle Fauvel , the founder of the Paris-based company Initiative Film, has been consulting scriptwriters, directors and producers for 25 years, from the earliest stages of their film projects. Thanks to the vast network of international contacts that she has built while being associated with different film festivals and international script and project development labs, she is in a position to connect film professionals from different countries already during the development phase—a phase that is mostly overlooked by the co-production policies. We discussed with Isabelle Fauvel benefits and challenges of international development and how it can lead to more co-productions.
Petar Mitric

Chapter 19. ‘A Matter of Survival: Co-production as a Means of Competing Internationally’—an interview with Anders Kjærhauge

This chapter constitutes an interview with Anders Kjærhauge, Managing Director of the Zentropa Group. Zentropa is Scandinavia’s largest film production company, perhaps best known as the producer of Lars von Trier’s work. In this interview, Kjærhauge explains Zentropa’s various transnational activities and shares insights into their extensive experience in international co-production, including aspects of public policy that are working well, and less well, for producers.
Julia Hammett-Jamart

Chapter 20. ‘European Television Co-productions’—an interview with Klaus Zimmermann

Klaus Zimmermann is managing partner at Dynamic Television, a TV financing, production and distribution company with offices in Berlin, Paris and Los Angeles. In this interview, Zimmermann reveals the differences between TV and film co-productions, how TV co-production has evolved from the 1990s to now and the extent to which television co-production is motivated by creative considerations.
Benjamin Harris

Chapter 21. ‘Co-production Case Study: Ida by Pawel Pawlikowski’—an interview with Ewa Puszczynska and Sofie Wanting Hassing

The Oscar-winning film Ida (2013) by Pawel Pawlikowski is one of the few European art house films that are both festival and box-office hits. We talked with two of the film’s producers Ewa Puszczynska (Poland) and Sofie Wanting Hassing (Denmark) about what made this Polish-Danish co-production successful and about the challenges they faced throughout its development, production and distribution. Puszczynska shares her perspective of the majority producer while Hassing focuses on her experience as the co-producer.
Petar Mitric

Chapter 22. ‘Unofficially European: Case Study of BAFTA-Winning I am not a Witch’—an interview with Juliette Grandmont

Juliette Grandmont was a French co-producer of the film I am not a Witch by Rungano Nyoni (2017). This feature film was shot entirely in Africa, financed by four different territories (Britain, Wales, France, Holland, Germany), but remained outside of the ‘official co-production’ apparatus. I am not a Witch has won accolades worldwide—screening at the Cannes and Sundance Film Festivals and winning ‘Outstanding Debut’ feature at the 2018 BAFTAs. In this interview, Grandmont recounts the packaging and financing of the film and the opportunities and challenges inherent in this type of unofficial co-production.
Katell Leon


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