BUCHAREST: Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn by Romanian writer/director Radu Jude screens in the Main Competition of the 71st Berlinale, set to kick off on 1 March 2021. The coproduction between Romania, Luxembourg, the Czech Republic and Croatia has been picked-up by Athens-based Heretic Outreach. Jude was awarded Best Director at the Berlinale for Aferim! in 2015.

WARSAW: FNE has teamed up with the Brussels based team of the International Union of Cinemas (UNIC) to bring you regular updates on EU cinema policies that impact all industry professionals across Europe. Click here for FNE UNIC EU Cinema Policy Update.

COVID-19: EU response

12/02: Statement by President von der Leyen at the joint press conference with President Sassoli and Portuguese Prime Minister Costa on the Recovery and Resilience Facility – European Commission

11/02: EU recovery package: Council adopts Recovery and Resilience Facility – Council of the EU

The Council adopted a regulation establishing the Recovery and Resilience Facility, which lies at the heart of the EU’s recovery plan. It will make €672.5 billion in grants and loans available for public investment and reforms in the 27 member states to help them address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, to foster the green and digital transitions and to build resilient and inclusive societies.

11/02: Remarks by Commissioner Gentiloni at the press conference on the Winter 2021 Economic Forecast – European Commission

10/02: MEPs call on ECB to prepare for looming economic difficulties – European Parliament

MEPs urge the European Central Bank to consider different policy measures to those currently in place to stimulate the EU economy, which faces darkening prospects.

10/02: Questions and answers: The Recovery and Resilience Facility – European Commission

04/02: Covid-19 recovery: how the main EU instrument will work – European Parliament

The €672.5 billion Recovery and Resilience Facility is the key tool in the EU's Covid-19 recovery plan to support reforms in response to the crisis.

Copyright enforcement

11/02: Participants in the virtual conference on "The Intellectual Property Metamorphosis in the Age of Digital Transition" – 2021 Portugal EU

With four panels and numerous participants, the aim of the encounter was to debate the topics directly related to industrial property.

EU Digital Services Act (DSA) & Digital Markets Act (DMA)

10/02: Regulate social media platforms to defend democracy, MEPs say – European Parliament

In a debate with Secretary of State for European Affairs Ana Paula Zacarias from the Portuguese Presidency of the Council, and Commission Vice-President Věra Jourová, almost all speakers criticised the vast power of social media platforms and their worrying impact on politics and freedom of speech.

/02: Proposal for a Regulation on contestable and fair markets in the digital sector (Digital Markets Act) – EAO Newsletter

The European Commission published the eagerly-awaited Proposal for a Regulation on contestable and fair markets in the digital sector (Digital Markets Act) (DMA). The DMA builds upon the Platform-to-Business Regulation 2019 and its purpose is to target very large online platforms which act as gatekeepers between business users and end users, and which have a major impact and substantial control on the access to certain digital markets.

/02: Proposal for a Regulation on a Single Market For Digital Services (Digital Services Act, DSA) – EAO Newsletter

The European Commission published the much-anticipated Proposal for a Regulation on a Single Market For Digital Services (Digital Services Act, DSA). The proposed DSA introduces a harmonised set of new rules for digital services, including social media, online market places, and other online platforms that operate in the European Union.

Streaming Platforms

15/02: EU Filmmakers Call on Global Streamers to Commit to Fair Negotiating Conditions On Remuneration – FERA

As global streamers are on the rise in the European audiovisual online distribution and production markets, European filmmakers look forward to new opportunities for creative endeavors. The ongoing implementation of key European Directives touching to media regulation (AVMS Directive 2018/1808) and authors’ rights (Copyright Directive 2019/790) should ensure that these collaborations develop in fair and sustainable conditions for European audiovisual creation.


/02: Local media law harmonised with the Audiovisual Media Services Directive - EAO Newsletter

On 22 December 2020, a new Act for amendment and supplement to Закон за радиото и телевизията (the Radio and Television Act - RTA) was promulgated in Държавен вестник (State Gazette) and entered into force on the same day. By way of this Act, Bulgaria has transposed Directive (EU) 2018/1808 (AVMSD/Directive) shortly after the infringement procedure opened by the Commission against Bulgaria and other countries.


01/02: EIB Group and Deutsche Leasing Romania strengthen support for business impacted by COVID-19 – European Commission

The first cooperation between the EIB Group and Deutsche Leasing Romania will help to strengthen investment by Romanian companies active in sectors affected by COVID-19.

Recent studies

The European Authors’ Society -  Launch of Rebuilding Europe – EYxGESAC study – February 2021


19 February: G7 leaders' videoconference

 24 – 25 February: CULT Meeting

 25 February: Video conference of the members of the European Council

 8 – 11 March: European Parliament Plenary

VALETTA: The adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s award-winning novel, Foundation produced by Apple TV+, has finished shooting in Malta, with the production spending more than 10 m EUR on the island, employing more than 400 crew and 800 extras over a four-month period.

VALLETTA: Jesmark Scicluna, a Maltese fisherman who was cast in the lead of the Maltese film Luzzu, won the World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award in Acting at the Sundance Film Festival. Luzzu was directed by Alex Camilleri and produced by Noruz Films, Luzzu Ltd, Pellikola, Maborosi Films. Luzzu is the first Maltese film to ever screen at a major film festival.

PRAGUE: The Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival is accepting submissions of films and submissions for its Emerging Producers programme. The 25th edition of the festival will take place 26 – 31 October 2021.

BRUSSELS: FERA, the Federation of European Screen Directors, issued a statement on 15 February 2021 calling for global steamers to commit to transparency and remunerations.

PRAGUE: Eight projects developed in the dok.incubator workshop in 2020 were introduced in a live online broadcast on 9 February 2020 in a carefully curated presentation. They were selected for their unique cinematic potential from over one hundred submitted rough cuts. The films were intensively developed throughout 2020 with tutors and experts during and in between three sessions and are all ready for release in the near future.

FNE asked Krzysztof Godziejewski, head of Warsaw based film equipment rental company Fastmedia, about the impact of the pandemic on the film industry in the film equipment rental sector. He tells us how after the demand stalled initially at the beginning of the pandemic last year, film production with safety measures in place restarted over the summer and has now returned to pre-pandemic levels. He also talks about the rise of streaming, and different kinds of equipment his clients now are asking for, and new directions for the future development of the Polish film industry.

The 3rd session of the Ex Oriente Film workshop 2020/21 will take place during the East Doc Platform (March 6-17, 2021, online). Find all about the tutors who will help filmmakers develop their documentary projects!

The lead tutors of the 3rd Ex Oriente Film workshop are documentary expert Mikael Opstrup, producer and consultant Iikka Vehkalahti, director and script editor Ivana Pauerová Miloševič and director and producer Filip Remunda. We are happy to announce guest tutors of the 3rd workshop:

Alexander Nanau

Director and producer, mostly known for his latest film Collective, premiered out of competition at the 76th Venice Film Festival 2019. It was also screened at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival and in the Spotlight section of the 2020 Sundace Film Festival. It got European Film Award for the Best Documentary among many other accolades. Shortlisted for both Best International Feature and Best Documentary Feature.
His film Toto and His Sisters (2014) premiered at the San Sebastian Film Festival in the 'New Directors' section. The film won major awards at the international film festivals in Angers, Zurich, Warsaw, Jihlava, Leipzig and Sarajevo. It was nominated as 'Best Documentary' at the European Film Awards 2015 and won the international Cinema Eye Honors' Spotlight Award 2016.

Maya Daisy Hawke

Film editor, creator of the social media video novels: Currency of Despair (2014); Box of Birds (2016); and Unfated Yet (2020) presented by Sundance DFP and LACMA. She is the co-director of Little Ethiopia, a live documentary, performed at the Sundance FF, Museum of the Moving Image in NYC, and in London at ICA Frames of Representation (2017-19). As well as Little Ethiopia: Chez Nous, performed online at  IDFA (2020). Maya has edited two films with Werner Herzog including "Cave of Forgotten Dreams”​ (she and partner Joe Bini were nominated for an ACE Eddie Award). Before that she was assistant editor on eight of Herzog's films including Grizzly Man. She edited the feature doc Freedom Fields (2018), which premiered at TIFF.

Fraser Bensted

Trailer editor and marketing expert. Fraser began his career as a trailer editor fifteen years ago, rapidly becoming one of the most successful and respected in the field, winning a Golden Trailer Award for his international trailer for Billy Elliot. More, he has extended his career by becoming a highly regarded trailer producer, specialising particularly in the independent sector. He has overseen successful and creatively original campaigns for a wide range of acclaimed films, including Slumdog Millionaire, Searching for Suger Man, Hunger and They Call Me Babu

Ruth Reid

Producer with projects selected for over a hundred film festivals globally and pitched internationally at high profile markets including IDFA, Visions du Reel and Nordisk Panorama; received multiple nominations, including BAFTA and EFA shortlisted, and winning awards including Tribeca Best Documentary. Titles include: Merry Christmas Yiwu (2020 dir. Mladen Kovacevic); Scheme Birds (2019 dirs. Ellen Fiske & Ellinor Hallin); Workers! (2018, dir. Petra Bauer). Most recently at Warner Bros ITVP, Reid has produced the first ever documentary series for HBO Nordic, slated for release in Spring 2021, entitled: Pray Obey Kill (dir. Henrik Georgsson).

Maëlle Guenegues

Sales agent who joined Catherine Le Clef in 2009 to set up CAT&Docs. dedicated to the promotion & distribution of handpicked documentaries, in all media around the world: pertinent and impertinent docs on topical questions and timeless subjects; docs that are carefully researched, audacious, question the world and propose new ways of looking at it. Successful titles include: The New Gospel, The Earth is Blue as an Orange, Overseas, The Good Postman, Communion, Stranger in Paradise, Houston, We Have a Problem!, Cameraperson, Sonita, A Syrian Love Story, CITIZENFOUR, My Love Don‘t Cross That River, Of Men and War, 5 Broken Cameras, Planet of Snail, Last Tain Home

Debra Zimmerman

Debra Zimmerman has been the Executive Director of Women Make Movies (WMM) since 1983. For over 45 years Women Make Movies has been championing women filmmakers and their stories. Many WMM films have won or been nominated for Oscars. She is in great demand around the world as a speaker on independent film distribution, marketing and financing. She is a member of numerous Advisory Boards for many media organizations, a jury member for many international film festivals, and regularly sits on foundation and government funding panels. She is the recipient of New York Women in Film and Television’s Loreen Arbus Award and the Hot Doc’s Doc Mogul Award.

Arash T. Riahi

Director and producer. His first fiction film For a Moment Freedom was Austria’s candidate for the Academy Awards in 2010. Since 2010, he also works as a dramatic advisor for the Creative Europe script-development programmes SOURCES 2, Nipkow and Berlinale Talents. He teaches at the Vienna film school and the filmacademy, and has held lectures at the Scottish Documentary Institute, Goethe Institute Dublin, ZKM Karlsruhe, etc. Recent works include the documentary Born in Evin, co-produced with Tondowski Film and awarded the Compass Perspektive award at the Berlinale 2019 as well as Solo, a co-production with Artcam & Petit a Petit which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival 2019.

Anja Salomonowitz

Director, editor and script writer. Anja Salomonowitz developed a film language for her films that combines documentary film, feature film and thesis. In the process, real human experiences are condensed through artistic alienation. Her films have received international acclaim, numerous film awards and have been included in relevant documentary film literature. She holds masterclasses on artistic documentary film at universities and film festivals. All her films are explicitly political and always question the border and possibilities of documentary film making. Her latest film is This Movie Is a Gift (2019) about the artist Daniel Spoerri.

The 3rd session of the Ex Oriente Film workshop is organized by the Institute of Documentary Film with kind support of Creative Europe MEDIA, American Film Showcase, U.S. Embassy in the Czech Republic, American Film Showcase, Creative Europe MEDIA, The Czech Film Fund, the Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, and Visegrad Fund. In cooperation with FAMU.

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