900 million viewers can’t be wrong. And the China Movie Channel, Official Sponsor of the Cannes Market Party last night will deliver them to see your movie! With the other sponsor Champs Lis International, the Chinese put on a spectacular show last night with state-of-the-art-never-before-seen fireworks which all of Cannes must have enjoyed. Luckily the good weather held though sometimes the waves looked like they might wash over the party and take away the sand we were sitting upon. On the ground below, at the Majestic Beach, the international buyers, sellers and some select and lucky producers of films in the Cannes Marche mingled and talked of films, families, old times and new. This event officially kicks off the market with 1,500 screenings – 65 in 3D – 4,500 projects on offer and films combined, 450 international sales agents licensing films to 2,500 distributors from some 100 countries doing business to a tune of approximately 1 billion US dollars.
Since its first edition in 1946, the Cannes Film Festival has always celebrated the passion for cinema. Over the years, the steady growth of its participants and the emergence of new economic issues has made the Festival the key annual meeting of film professionals. The festival’s first Film Market was created in 1959 with a few dozen participants and one projection room built on the canvas roof of the old Palais Croisette. This tiny market gradually emerged as an international event designed, organized and planned with one goal: success for all cinemas. 50 years later, the market attracts 10,000 participants who take advantage of this unique environment for present and discover almost 4,500 films and projects in more than 30 screening rooms and 1 out of every 3 equipped to show 3D and digital projections.
After the opening of the Riviera in May 2000, then Lerins few years later, the center of the market has been around the Palais des Festivals and the “International Village”, instead of the bars and terraces at the Majestic, Grand, Carlton and Martinez hotels along the Croisette. The 2009 satisfaction survey of the market showed that the environment was acclaimed by 97.8% of professionals present. 10,000 professionals can’t be wrong.