Cinema Chile

At Cannes, Chile Celebrates its Role as “Country in Focus” at the 2020 Berlinale Audiovisual Market

May 19, 2019

Matthijs Knol, director of the European Film Market (EFM), along with the executive secretary of Chile’s Council for the Arts and the Audiovisual Industry and the executive director of CinemaChile, presented for the first time the official logo for the 2020 edition of the EFM, the Berlin Film Festival’s audiovisual market, where Chile will participate as the “Country in Focus”. The program’s objective is to present a determined country’s film industry and filmmakers in depth, offering them a special platform through which to showcase their talents.

This afternoon, and in the framework of the Cannes Film Festival, several authorities of the Chilean film industry gathered with the director of the EFM, Matthijs Knol, at CinemaChile’s temporary headquarters in the French city, in order to celebrate a great announcement: Chile will be the next country in focus at the Berlinale’s audiovisual market, becoming the first South American country to be invited to this instance, and coinciding with the 70th version of the Berlin International Festival.

“Chile’s presence at the EFM and other Berlinale industry initiatives has grown constantly over the part few years, and the creativity of the Chilean film industry has been confirmed yet again at an international level with A Fantastic Woman’s Academy Award win. We hope to develop a diversified and substantial program with our Chilean partners. Chile has a lot to tell, and a lot to offer to the future,” affirms Matthijs Wouter Knol, director of the EFM.

The EFM’s “Country in Focus” program was launched in 2017, and next year, the spotlight at the Berlinale will be placed on Chile. The EFM will present our country’s filmmakers under different categories, and the main program will offer diverse opportunities for interaction amongst Chilean producers, distributors, investors and creators, as well as for presenting new Chilean productions. With the support of ProChile, “Chile in Focus” will also mark the 10th anniversary of CinemaChile, the sectorial brand that has successfully promoted Chilean film and audiovisual productions in general all over the world. CinemaChile, ProCHile, and the Ministry of Cultures, the Arts and Patrimony, as well as other entities from our country, will work together with the EFM in order to carry out this great opportunity during February of next year.

“What’s relevant about this event is that it’s for the entire trade. This isn’t just an institutional achievement, it’s an achievement for the entire profession: for the directors, the producers, for everyone who works in the Chilean audiovisual industry. They are the true protagonists of this milestone, and this is for them. We are the entity that lends support and gives them the necessary tools for doing their job, but this recognition is for them,” assures Daniel Laguna, Executive Secretary of the Council for the Arts and Audiovisual Industry (CAIA), which belongs to the Ministry of Cultures.

Chilean film has always been present at the Berlinale, and has received numerous awards confirming its success. Some examples are the Silver Bears that have been presented to highly acclaimed films, such as Gloria and A Fantastic Woman, by Sebastián Lelio, who was also a member of the international jury in 2019. The renowned and awarded films The Club by Pablo Larraín and El Botón de Nácar by Patricio Guzmán have also contributed to the history of Chilean film at the Berlinale, when both films received Silver Bears in 2015. Previously, the countries selected to be the country in focus have been Mexico, Canada, and this year, Norway.

“To CinemaChile, to the entire team, it is a very particular honor to be the country in focus, and to work as the technical and audiovisual counterpart for this entire national delegation, in order to have a presence at the EFM in the year of the Berlinale’s 70th anniversary, as well as in the year that Carlo Chatrian and Mariette Rissenbeek are taking over both the artistic and executive co-direction of this very important international festival. I think that the stars have aligned themselves so that the entire world will be looking at Berlin in February of next year, and that is where we will be, showing the world everything that we have to carry out together with our national partners,” affirms Constanza Arena, executive director of CinemaChile.