Behind Cannes glamour, tougher times for European movies

by Peter D. Marshall

from the Economic Times.

Europe’s top film festival opens in Cannes on Wednesday to its annual show of glitz and popping champagne corks, but for many in the continent’s movie business, times are tough and likely to get tougher still.

The financial crisis that erupted in 2008 is now biting hard into state and regional subsidies and TV programming budgets that are a key support for film-making. Added to that in some countries is the problem of rampant piracy, as people snub a trip to the cinema and instead download their films off the Internet.

“There are many clouds over movie funding,” said Eric Garandeau, head of France’s National Cinema Centre (CNC), which helps the French film industry, the biggest in Europe.

“In some countries, the crisis is widespread — in some places, long-standing policies are being scrapped.”

The 12-day Cannes Film Festival will feature six French, one Italian and one Dutch film in competition. But Spain — one of the most prolific and quirky producer countries — will literally be out of the picture.

Read the rest of this article from the Economic Times.

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