Latvia

Blizzard of Souls by Dzintars DreibergsMARKET ANALYSIS 2019

RIGA: The Latvian film Blizzard of Souls directed by Dzintars Dreibergs broke box-office records existing since the early 1990s, showing the continuing demand for local films, that was significantly boosted by the Latvian centenary film programme, which peaked in 2018.

Two domestic productions made it to the the Top Ten box-office list. The most popular domestic film was Blizzard of Souls / Dvēseļu putenis, a historical drama directed by Dzintars Dreibergs and produced by Kultfilma, with 226,984 admissions (8.33 % of total 2019 admissions). The independent production Class Reunion / Klases salidojums directed by Andrejs Ēķis and produced by Platforma was number 7 on the list, reaching 80,967 admissions.

The last films of the Latvian Films for Latvian Centenary programme were released in 2019: the feature film 1906 directed by Gatis Šmits and produced by Studio Tanka, and the long animated film Jacob, Mimmi, and the Talking Dogs / Jēkabs, Mimi un runājošie suņi directed by Edmunds Jansons and produced by Atomart.  

PRODUCTION

Class Reunion by Andrejs EkisA total of 17 feature fiction films, 10 animated films and 16 documentaries were in production in 2019, with the support of the National Film Centre of Latvia.

Among the feature fiction films in production there were: The Year before the War / Gads pirms kara directed by Dāvis Sīmanis and produced by Latvia’s Locomotive in coproduction with Lithuania’s Studio Uljana Kim and Czech Produkce Radim Prochazka, In the Mirror / Spogulī directed by Laila Pakalniņa and produced by Hargla in coproduction with Lithuania’s Just a Moment, The Pit / Bedre directed by Dace Pūce and produced by Marana Productions, Christmas in the Jungle / Ziemassvētki Džungļos directed by Jaak Kilmi and produced by Locomotive.

Among the documentaries in production there were: The Peasants / Zemnieki directed by Ivars Seleckis and produced by Mistrus Media, and The Fire Circle / Uguns aplis directed by Signe Birkova and produced by VFS Films.

DISTRIBUTION

A total of 320 films were distributed in 2019, including 54 domestic films, 117 European non-national productions, 130 films produced in the USA, and 19 films from other territories.

The leading distribution companies in the country are regional Baltic distributors: Forum CinemasLatvian Theatrical DistributionAcme Film, Garsu Pasaulio irasai and BestFilm.

1906 by Gatis ŠmitsRegional distribution in areas without permanent cinemas is handled by Kinopunkts, which screens films in more than 100 places. The project is sustained by the National Film Centre and the Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia.

Small cinema initiatives focusing on the distribution of independent and art house films, such as Kino Bize and Kino Spektrs, which emerged in 2014 and 2015, continued their activity in 2019.

The Internet platform Filmas.lv, the biggest Latvian film database, launched in 2015, provides a catalogue of 2,740 films going back to the 1920s. Two hundred films are available free of charge for viewing on any device in Latvia. Special events had been organised to make the films available internationally for a limited period of time, due to copyright restrictions. The project is supported by the National Film Centre of Latvia in cooperation with the Culture Information Systems Centre.

Commercial platforms ShortcutLMT straume, Helio and Viaplay offer film streamings, including domestic premieres.

Nova Lituania by the Lithuanian director Karolis Kaupinis and produced by Lithuanian M-films, won the best feature film award at the 6th Riga International Film Festival (17-27 October 2019).

The best national fiction film award announced during the Lielais Kristaps National Film Festival (7-12 November 2019) went to Oleg / Oļegs directed by Juris Kursietis and produced by Tasse Film (Latvia) in coproduction with Iota Productions (Belgium), In Script (Lithuania) and Arizona Production (France).

The annual analogue and experimental film festival Process took place from 20-24 March 2019, and actors’ film festival Baltijas Pērle took place from 21-27 September 2019.

Oleg by Juris KursietisEXHIBITION AND BOX OFFICE

Latvia had 34 screening places in 2019, out of which 20 are cinemas (including five multiplexes, one of them with 4 screens) with 81 screens, from which 72 are digital screens (36 3D screens), throughout the country.

A new multiplex cinema Apollo Kino opened in Riga in 2019. It has nine screens with a total of 1,146 seats, and the first IMAX hall in Latvia.

Total admissions were 2,723,422 and total gross was 14,962,678 EUR in 2019, compared to 2,523,600 total admissions and 13,293,972 EUR total gross in 2018.

Out of the total, 548,938 were admissions to domestic films, 356,645 admissions to European non-national productions, 1,765,099 admissions to US-produced films, and 52,740 admissions to films from other countries.

Admissions to domestic films in 2019 (548,938) were only slightly lower than in 2018, when the number was 556,832.

Domestic films continued to have an important market share in the distribution in 2019 - 20.16 % (2,504,132 gross). In 2018 it was – 22.07%, in 2017 only 7.84%.

A total of 54 national films were screened in 2019 and two of them made it to the admissions top ten.

Jacob, Mimmi and the Talking Dogs by Edmunds JansonsThe most successful film was Blizzard of Souls directed by Dzintars Dreibergs and produced by Kultfilma, with 226,984 admissions, followed by five animated films such as The Lion King (109,821 admissions), How to Tame Your Dragon 3 (101,182 admissions) and The Secret Life of Pets 2 (95,487 admissions), as well as Joker (86,599 admissions), Avengers: Endgame (72,596 admissions) and Once Upon a Time …in Hollywood (51,675 admissions).

GRANTS AND NEW LEGISLATION

The National Film Centre is the main film institution in Latvia. It serves as the primary source of funding for local films. The grants contest is held annually, although separate tenders regarding different stages of project development, or specific thematic programmes, are announced throughout the year.

Total state support for the industry in 2019 was 6 397 379 EUR, including 5 462 576 EUR from the National Film Centre and 934 803 EUR from the Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia.

Through the production financing grant schemes (annual production grants and a special programme for National identity films) in 2019, the National Film Centre supported the production of new domestic projects, four animated films, seven documentaries and six feature films, with a total amount of 1 610 401 EUR.

Four projects received funding through minority coproduction grants: one documentary and three feature films, for the total amount of 300,000 EUR.

In 2019, the total financing for the production of national films, including minority coproductions, in the amount of 3,64, 276 EUR, was granted to a total of 33 films: 14 feature films, eight animated films and 11 documentaries.

The Year Before the War by Dāvis Sīmanis, photo: Gatis Indrēvics, FACEBOOKIn 2019 a total of 679,903 EUR was distributed for servicing seven projects with production companies from the Netherlands, Hungary, Finland, Russia, Germany, Sweden and South Korea.

In 2019 one Latvian minority coproduction received funding from Eurimages in the amount of 48,000 EUR – the Lithuanian feature film, musical drama Songs for a Fox directed by Kristijonas Vildžiūnas and produced by Lithuania’s Studio Uljana Kim in coproduction with Latvia’s Locomotive.

In 2019 the Riga Film Fund, which offers a cash rebate of up to 20% of all production costs, approved co-financing agreements for a total amount of 484,110 EUR, supporting four minority coproductions.

A new rule was implemented in the financing legislation: in the case of grants for domestic films, at least 80% from the applicable expenses have to be spent in Latvia.

Latvia has a range of diverse filmmaking locations, including medieval architecture, Art Nouveau architecture and 19th century wooden architecture, therefore urban as well as natural locations in Latvia are able to double for many European locations.

Latvia is also home to The Cinevilla Film Studio, located 50 km from the national capital of Riga and providing opportunities for shooting, as well as its own hotel.

The Latvian Film Producers Association with its approximately 30 members represents the most important film production companies in Latvia. The Latvian Filmmakers Union, which was established in 1962, also represents local filmmakers. An important role in the region is played by the Films Service Producers Association, whose members include, among others, the Latvian Film Angels Studio, the Baltic Pines film studio and Ego Media. These studios have vast experience in handling foreign productions shooting in Latvia.

TV

Christmas In The Jungle by Jaak Kilmi, photo: Andrejs StrokinsThe leading broadcaster in Latvia until the second half of 2019 was the commercial channel TV3 along with the LNT channel. LNT was taken over by TV3, that combined previously separately operating news departments and rebranded LNT. TV3 belongs to the company All Media Baltics, which underwent rebranding and is now called TV3 Group.

The public broadcaster LTV is funded by the state and through advertising revenues. The Latvian Television organises an annual documentary film project The Code of Latvia / Latvijas kods focusing on stories about contemporary life in Latvia. The project is implemented in cooperation and with the support of the National Film Centre of Latvia and the Culture Capital Foundation. New episodes are presented every year in November as a part of Latvian Independence Day celebrations.

In 2019 LTV produced and broadcast a 12 episode series for the centenary of Latvia - The Red Forest / Sarkanais mežs directed by Normunds Pucis and Armands Zvirbulis, a historical story taking place at the end of the 1940s.  

CONTACTS:

NATIONAL FILM CENTRE OF LATVIA 
Peitavas 10, Riga, Latvia, LV-1050
Phone: +371 7358878
Fax: +371 7358877
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
www.nkc.lv
Director: Dita Rietuma


RIGA FILM FUND
Phone: +371 6703 7659
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
www.filmriga.lv

CULTURE CAPITAL FOUNDATION 
Class Reunion by Andrejs EkisPhone: +371 6750 3177
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
www.kkf.lv

LATVIAN FILM PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION 
President: Aija Berzina
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Mobile: +371 26466014

LATVIAN FILMMAKERS UNION 
Chairman: Ieva Romanova
Elizabetes Str.49, Riga
LV-1010, Latvia
Mobile: +371 29696874
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

FILM SERVICE PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION OF LATVIA
Kr. Valdemara 33-10, Riga, LV-1010, Latvia
Phone: +371 67331921
Mobile: +371 25666698
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
www.filmservice.lv


MINISTRY OF CULTURE
Phone: +371 6707 8137
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
www.km.gov.lv

Report by Zane Balčus (2020)
Sources: Film Riga, the National Film Centre of Latvia, the Riga Film Fund, the Latvian Television


MARKET ANALYSIS 2018

Homo Novus by Anna VidulejaLatvia’s film programme for the country’s centenary, which was celebrated in 2018, has led to an unheard of box office success and has shown an unprecedented rise in local box office, marking the local share of up to almost 19% of the market compared to 5.7% previously.

Domestic productions took half of the top ten in 2018 and the GBO for local productions grew to 2.5 million EUR (from 764,000 EUR in 2017).

Intensive distribution of domestic films was due to the special programme “Latvian Films for Latvian Centenary”, consisting of 16 feature films, of which 11 had their premiere in 2018.

The most popular film was Homo Novus, a historical comedy directed by Anna Viduleja and produced by Film Angels Productions, with 91,109 admissions. The independent production and debut feature The Foundation of Criminal Exellence / Kriminālās ekselences fonds, directed by Oskars Rupenheits and produced by COMETE Films, OrderOrder and Jura Podnieka Studija, gained the biggest revenue – 460,000 EUR, with 81,899 admissions.The Foundation of Criminal Excellence by Oskars Rupenheits

PRODUCTION

The support for domestic film production fell after the end of the Centennial programme.

Seventeen feature films, 10 animated films and 16 documentaries were in production in 2018.

Oleg by Juris KursietisThe action drama Blizzard of Souls / Dvēseļu putenis directed by Dzintars Dreibergs and produced by KultFilma, one of the most expensive productions of all times, was shot in 2018 and will be released in November 2019.

Juris Kursietis’ drama Oleg / Oļegs produced by Tasse, was also shot in 2018 and is set for release in September 2019.

The last two films of the “Latvian Films for Latvian Centenary” programme will be released in 2019. The long animated film Jacob, Mimmi and the Talking Dogs / Jēkabs, Mimmi un runājošie suņi, directed by Edmunds Jansons and produced by Atom Art, will be released by Forumcinemas in February 2019, while Gatis Šmit’s historical drama 1906 produced by studio Tanka will be released by Acme in March 2019.

DISTRIBUTION

A total of 310 films were distributed in 2018, including 34 domestic films.

The leading distribution companies in the country are regional Baltic distributors: Forum Cinemas, Latvian Theatrical Distribution, Acme Film and Topfilm Baltic.

Local distribution is handled by Kinopunkts, which screens films in more than 100 places outside traditional cinemas. The project is sustained by the National Film Centre and the Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia.Jacob, Mimmi and the Talking Dogs by Edmunds Jansons

Small cinema initiatives focusing on the distribution of independent and art house films, such as Kino Bize and Kino Spektrs, which emerged in 2014 and 2015, continued their activity.

The Internet platform Filmas, the biggest Latvian film database launched in 2015, provides a catalogue of 2,658 films going back to the 1920s. Approximately 120 films are free of charge but for the time being only on Latvian devices, due to distribution rights. The project is supported by the National Film Centre of Latvia in cooperation with the Riga Film Museum and the Culture Information Systems Centre.

Commercial platforms Shortcut, Helio and Viaplay offer film streamings, including domestic premieres.

Core of the World, directed by the Russian director Natalia Meshchaninova and coproduced by Lithuania’s Just A Moment, won the best feature film award at the 4th Riga International Film Festival (7-17 October 2018).

Core of the World by Natalia MeshchaninovaThe national award announced during the Lielais Kristaps National Film Festival went to Bille directed by Ināra Kolmane and produced by Film Studio Deviņi, in coproduction with Czech Masterfilm and Lithuanian Studija 2.

The annual short film festival 2 Annas took place from 26 November to 2 December 2018.

EXHIBITION AND BOX OFFICE

Latvia had 25 cinemas in 2018 (including four multiplexes) with 62 screens (25 3D screens) and 60 digital screens throughout the country.

Domestic films had a significant rise in admissions, adding up to almost 18,85% market share, which is unprecedented, compared to 7,83% in 2017.

A total of 34 films had their premiere in 2018 and five of them made it to the admissions top 10.In the Dusk by Šarūnas Bartas

The most successful films through October 2018 are Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (94,231 admissions), Homo Novus directed by Anna Viduleja and produced by Film Angels Productions (91,109), The Pagan King / Nameja gredzens directed by Aigars Grauba and produced by Platforma Filma (83,140), The Foundation of Criminal Excellence / Kriminālās ekselences fonds directed by Oskars Rupenheits (81,899), Grinch (80,544), Bohemian Rhapsody (72,751), Bille directed by Ināra Kolmane and produced by Film Studio Deviņi in coproduction with Czech Masterfilm and Lithuanian Studija 2 (62,992), Johny English Strikes Again (47,449), Paradise ’89 / Paradīze ’89 directed by Madara Dišlere, produced by Tasse Film and coproduced with Bastei Media (57,386), Fifty Shades Freed (57,340).

Admissions for domestic films reached 560,257 in 2018, compared to 194,083 in 2017.

The Pagan King by Aigars GraubaGRANTS AND NEW LEGISLATION

The National Film Centre is the main film institution in Latvia. It serves as the primary source of funding for local films. The grants contest is held annually, although separate tenders regarding different stages of project development are announced throughout the year.

Total state support for the industry in 2018 was 6,192,637 EUR, including 5,455,699 EUR from the National Film Centre and 736,938 EUR from the Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia.

Approximately 3.7 m EUR was granted for the production of 43 films in 2018: 17 feature films, 10 animated films and 16 documentaries.

In 2018 a total of 576,825 EUR was distributed for servicing three projects, while 581,188 EUR was allotted as coproduction grants for 11 projects: six feature films, three documentaries, one long animated film and one short animated film.

In 2018 two Latvian minority coproductions received funding from Eurimages totalling 540,000 EUR – the Lithuanian feature film In the Dusk directed by Sharunas Bartas, and the Hungarian feature film Natural Light directed by Denes Nagy, both of them coproduced by Mistrus Media,

Paradise '89 by Madara DišlereIn 2018 the Riga Film Fund, which offers a cash rebate of up to 20% of all production costs, approved co-financing agreements for a total amount of 1,112,598 EUR, supporting five minority coproductions.

Among the projects that received co-financing agreements were two coproductions handled by Latvia’s Tasse Film, one by Forma Pro Films, one by Film Studio Deviņi and one by Rīgas Filmu Studija. The largest rebate was granted to Tasse Film’s Heirs of the Night, directed by Diederik Van Rooijen and coproduced by Lemming Film. The rebate will be up to 490,000 EUR, representing 20% of the costs in Latvia.

Latvia has a range of diverse filmmaking locations, including medieval architecture, Art Nouveau architecture and 19th century wooden architecture, therefore urban as well as natural locations in Latvia are able to double for many European places. Latvia is home to The Cinevilla Film Studio, that is located 50 km from the national capital of Riga and provides opportunities for shooting, as well as its own hotel.

The Latvian Film Producers Association with its approximately 30 members represents the most important film production companies in Latvia. The Latvian Filmmakers Union, which was established in 1962, also represents local filmmakers. An important role in the region is played by the Films Service Producers Association, whose members include, among others, the Latvian Film Angels Studio, the Baltic Pines film studio and Ego Media. These studios have vast experience in handling foreign productions shooting in Latvia.

TV

Bille by Inara KolmaneThe leading broadcaster in Latvia is the commercial channel TV3 and along with the LNT channel it was purchased in 2017 by the investment company Providence Equity Partners from its previous owner Modern Times Group.

The public broadcaster LTV is funded by the state and through advertising revenues. The Latvian Television organises an annual film project The Code of Latvia / Latvijas kods focusing on stories about contemporary life in Latvia. The project is implemented in cooperation and with the support of the National Film Centre of Latvia and the Culture Capital Foundation. New episodes are presented every year in November as a part of Latvian Independence Day celebrations.

In 2018 public TV Latvian Television launched the TV series for teenagers 16+, broadcast only on YouTube, and the TV series Two in One, produced by Ugunsgreks, which previously produced a similar TV show for commercial TV3 (https://skaties.lv/tv3/).

CONTACTS:

NATIONAL FILM CENTRE OF LATVIA
Peitavas 10, Riga, Latvia, LV-1050
Phone: +371 7358878
Fax: +371 7358877
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.nkc.lv
Director: Dita Rietuma


RIGA FILM FUND
Phone: +371 6703 7659
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.filmriga.lv

CULTURE CAPITAL FOUNDATION
Phone: +371 6750 3177
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.kkf.lv


The Foundation of Criminal Excellence by Oskars RupenheitsLATVIAN FILM PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION
President: Aija Berzina
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Mobile: +371 26466014

LATVIAN FILMMAKERS UNION
Chairman: Ieva Romanova
Elizabetes Str.49, Riga
LV-1010, Latvia
Mobile: +371 29696874
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


FILM SERVICE PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION OF LATVIA
Kr. Valdemara 33-10, Riga, LV-1010, Latvia
Phone: +371 67331921
Mobile: +371 25666698
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.filmservice.lv


MINISTRY OF CULTURE
Phone: +371 6707 8137
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.km.gov.lv

Report by Zane Peneze (2019)
Sources: Film Riga, the National Film Centre of Latvia, the Latvian Television


 MARKET ANALYSIS 2017

Grandpa Is More Dangerous than the Computer by Varis BraslaAhead of Latvia's Centennial, which will be celebrated throughout 2018, the support for local film production steadily increased to 9,109,016 EUR in 2017, with more than 2 m EUR increase compared to 2016. Film production has taken a more robust path due to the Latvian Films for Latvian Centenary special programme, consisting of 16 feature films.

Total state support for the industry in 2017 was 9,109,016 EUR, including approximately 6 m EUR as production support for 42 films.

For the second consecutive year, two domestic films are among top 10 most watched movies in Latvia. There were 16 domestic premieres in 2017, of which the most successful was Varis Brasla's family film and comedy Grandfather Is More Dangerous than the Computer with 76,068 admissions and 281,029 EUR gross. Andrejs Ekis’ comedy Swingers, which was released at the end of 2016, ranked number seven.

PRODUCTION

Domestic films continued to steadily grow, as an unprecedented state support was given to the production of films in the Centennial programme.

A total of 15 feature films were in production in 2017, as well as nine animated films and 18 documentaries.

One of the most expensive productions, the historic drama The Pagan King, directed by Aigars Grauba and produced by Platforma Filma, wrapped at the end of 2017. Another major action drama, Blizzard of Souls / Dvēseļu putenis, directed by Dzintars Dreibergs and produced by KultFilma, was also shot in 2017.

Madara Dišlere's feature film Paradise '89 (produced by Tasse Film) is set at the time when Latvia regained its independence.

Swingers by Andrejs EkisMistrus Media produced three films in 2017: Ivars Seleckis' documentary To Be Continued (about several 7 year old children and their life), Gints Grūbe's documentary Lustrum (about KGB archives) and Dāvis Sīmanis' feature film The Mover (produced by Mistrus Media) about Žanis Lipke, who sheltered Jews during the Nazi occupation.

DISTRIBUTION

A total of 295 films were distributed in 2017.

The leading distribution companies in the country are regional Baltic distributors: Forum Cinemas, Latvian Theatrical Distribution, Acme Film and Topfilm Baltic.

Local distribution is also handled by Kinopunkts, that screens films in more than 100 locations outside traditional cinemas. The project is supported by the National Film Centre and the Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia.

Small cinema initiatives focusing on the distribution of independent and art house films, such as Kino Bize and Kino Spektrs, which emerged in 2014 and 2015, continued their activity in 2017.

The internet platform Filmas, the biggest Latvian film database launched in 2015, provides a catalogue of more than 2,500 films, going back to the 1920s. Approximately 120 films are free of charge, but for the time being only on Latvian devices, due to distribution rights. The project is supported by the National Film Centre of Latvia in cooperation with the Riga Film Museum and the Culture Information Systems Centre.

Two commercial platforms, Shortcut and Viaplay, offer film streamings, including domestic premieres.

The 4th Riga International Film Festival took place from 7 to 17 September 2017. Estonian director Rainer Sarnet’s November, an Estonian/Polish/Dutch coproduction between Estonia’s Homeless Bob Productions, Poland’s Opus Film and the Dutch company PRPL, was awarded Best Feature Film. The national award at the Lielais Kristaps National Film Festival went to Chronicles of Melanie, directed by Viestur Kairish and produced by Mistrus Media. The annual short film festival 2 Annas took place from 28 November to 3 December 2017.

The Pagan King by Aigars GraubaEXHIBITION AND BOX OFFICE

Latvia had 23 cinemas in 2017 (including 4 multiplexes) with 61 screens, of which 25 are 3D screens.

The average ticket price is 5.19 EUR.

In 2017 admissions were 2,476,951 and box office was 12,860,497 EUR.

Domestic films had 194 083 admissions, adding up to a 7.83% market share, which is a slight growth from 7,38% in 2016.

There were 16 domestic premieres in 2017. Among them are Varis Brasla's family film and comedy Grandfather Is More Dangerous than the Computer, produced by Studio F.O.R.M.A., which was the first film from the Latvian Films for Latvian Centenary programmme to be finished. Grandfather Is More Dangerous than the Computer was the most popular domestic movie in 2017 with more than 75,000 admissions and also the most successful domestic family film in the opening week with over 13,000 admissions. The film is domestically distributed by its production company, while Rija Films is handling the sales.

Ieva Ozolina's documentary Solving My Mother (produced by FA Filma), which won the 2017 IDFA First Appearance Special Jury Award, hit the domestic cinemas only at the beginning of 2018, but Janis Nords' relationship drama Foam at the Mouth (produced by Tasse Film) and the Latvian/Norwegian documentary Liberation Day (produced by VFS Films), about the famous band Laibach’s visit to North Korea, were released in 2017.

A total of 267 international films were released in 2017, compared to 276 in 2016.

Foam at the Mouth by Janis NordsThe most successful films in 2017 were: Despicable Me 3 (128,336 admissions), Grandpa Who Is More Dangerous Than the Computer (76,068 admissions), Boss Baby (76,017 admissions), The Fate of the Furious (72,813 admissions), Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (69,774 admissions), Fifty Shades Darker (63,631 admissions), Swingers (58,560 admissions), Emoji Movie (52,576 admissions), Smurfs: The Lost Village (51,038), Cars 3 (46,494 admissions).

GRANTS AND NEW LEGISLATION

The National Film Centre is the main film institution in Latvia. It serves as the primary source of funding for local films. The grants contest is held annually, although separate tenders regarding different stages of project development are announced throughout the year.

Total state support for the industry in 2017 was 9,109,016 EUR, including approximately 6 m EUR as production support for 42 films.

Additionally, 748,000 EUR were given to seven international coproductions, of which five are coproduced by Tasse Film. All the seven titles are Latvian minority coproductions.

Five Latvian productions received funding from Eurimages, totalling 557,000 EUR.

In 2017 the Riga Film Fund, which offers a cash rebate of up to 20% of all production costs, approved four co-financing agreements for a total amount of 686,509 EUR for six minority coproductions.

Among the projects that received co-financing agreements in 2017 were three coproductions handled by Tasse Film and two by Forma Pro Films. The largest rebate was granted to Film Angels Production for Age of Iron, directed by Philippe Berenger, that is a coproduction with France's Slot Machine. The rebate is 135,718 EUR, representing 20% of the costs of shooting in Latvia.

Paradise 89 by Madara DišlereLatvia has a range of diverse filmmaking locations, including medieval, Art Nouveau and 19th century wooden architecture, therefore urban as well as natural locations in Latvia are able to double for many European places. Latvia is home to the Cinevilla Film Studio, located 50 km from the national capital Riga and providing opportunities for shooting, as well as its own hotel.

The Latvian Film Producers Association with its approximately 30 members represents the most important film professionals association in Latvia. The Latvian Filmmakers Union, which was established in 1962, also represents local filmmakers. An important role in the region is played by the Films Service Producers Association, whose members include, among others, the Latvian Film Angels Studio, Baltic Pines film studio and Ego Media. These entities have a vast experience in handling foreign productions shooting in Latvia.

TV

The leading broadcaster in Latvia is the commercial channel TV3. Along with the LNT channel, it was purchased in 2017 by the investment company Providence Equity Partners from its previous owner Modern Times Group.

The public broadcaster LTV is funded by the state and also through advertising revenues. The Latvian Television organises an annual film project The Code of Latvia / Latvijas kods, focusing on stories about contemporary life in Latvia. The project is implemented in cooperation and with the support of the National Film Centre of Latvia and the Culture Capital Foundation. New episodes are presented every year in November as a part of Latvian Independence Day celebrations.

LTV, which is also a TV film producer, produced mostly documentaries in 2017. Red Book, a new historic drama TV series, was in production in 2017 and is set to be aired in 2018 as part of Latvia's Centennial celebration. The series is coproduced with Red Dot Media.

CONTACTS:

NATIONAL FILM CENTRE OF LATVIA
Peitavas 10, Riga, Latvia, LV-1050
Phone: +371 7358878
Fax: +371 7358877
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.nkc.lv
Director: Dita Rietuma


RIGA FILM FUND
Phone: +371 6703 7659
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.filmriga.lv

Chronicles of Melanie by Viesturs KairišsCULTURE CAPITAL FOUNDATION
Phone: +371 6750 3177
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.kkf.lv


LATVIAN FILM PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION
President: Aija Berzina
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Mobile: +371 26466014

LATVIAN FILMMAKERS UNION
Chairman: Ieva Romanova
Elizabetes Str.49, Riga
LV-1010, Latvia
Mobile: +371 29696874
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


FILM SERVICE PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION OF LATVIA
Kr. Valdemara 33-10, Riga, LV-1010, Latvia
Phone: +371 67331921
Mobile: +371 25666698
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.filmservice.lv


MINISTRY OF CULTURE
Phone: +371 6707 8137
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www.km.gov.lv

Report by Zane Peneze (2018)
Sources: Film Riga, the National Film Centre of Latvia, the Latvian Television

 

Fact box Latvia

Total population: 1,919,968 (2019)
Market share of domestic films: 20,18 % (2019)
Market share of European films: 33,19 % (2019)
Feature films produced: 12 (2019)
Number of screens: 63 (2019)
Annual state support for film industry: 5 m EUR (2019)

Source: Baltic Films, the World Bank

Animation Industry Profile LATVIA CLICK HERE


Latvia Top Ten Admissions 2018

Title Country of Origin Admissions
Blizzard of Souls LV 226,984
The Lion King US 109,821
How to Train Your Dragon 3 US/JP 101,182
The Secret Life of Pets 2 US/ FR/ JP 95,487
Joker CA/ US 86,599
Frozen 2 US 82,901
The Class Reunion LV 80,967
Avengers: Endgame US 72,596
Abominable CN/ US 57,404
Once Upon a Time in... Hollywood US/ UK/ CN 51,675

Source: the National Film Centre of Latvia

 

Check OLFFI for Film Funding opportunities

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Interview with Dita Rietuma

Dita

Dita Rietuma Head of the Latvian National Film Centre

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Interview with Ilze Gailite Holmberg

Ilze Gailite Holmberg - (former) Director, National Film Centre of Latvia

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Partner links Latvia

Ministry of Culture: www.km.gov.lv 

National Film Centre of Latvia - www.nfc.lv/ 

Latvian Filmmakers Union - www.latfilma.lv/ 

Latvian Film Producers Association - www.latfilma.lv/

State Culture Capital Foundation - www.kkf.lv/ 

Media Desk Latvia - www.mediadesk.lv/

Riga Film Museum – www.nfc.lv/

Department of Screen and Stage Art, Academy of Culture – www.lka.edu.lv/

Eurimages National Representative – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.