🌟 The Marche du Film Unveils a New & Stronger 2023 Ukraine in Focus Program

The Marché du Film is pleased to announce a newly revamped 2023 Ukraine in Focus program complete with a series of events tailored to support Ukrainian filmmakers, industry professionals and entrepreneurs and to celebrate the country’s creativity and cinema amidst turmoil in the territory.

Conferences, pitching sessions, networking events and innovative experiences will invite Ukrainian industry professionals to present their projects, expand their networks and help them find new co-producing partners and financing opportunities.

The main program event is the Ukraine in Focus Pitching Session, developed in partnership with the the European Solidarity Fund for Ukrainian Films, CNC, EFAD Association, Göteborg Film Fund, Institut Français, LIM | Less is More, Movies that Matter, Tatino Films and Ukrainian Institute. Ten Ukrainian feature film projects in development will be presented to potential co-producers and financiers. From fiction to documentary, to past and present, these diverse stories promise to captivate audiences with their unique perspectives on Ukrainian culture and society. (See the list of selected projects.)

The Ukraine in Focus program will also shift the spotlight of the Marché du Film’s key market programs towards Ukraine:

  • The Producers Network, in collaboration with the Göteborg Film Fund and the Ukrainian Institute, will spotlight five emerging Ukrainian producers: Karina Kostyna (TABOR), Andrii Kotliar (Babylon’13), Olha Matat (EVOS Film), Dmytro Sukhanov (Toy Cinema) and Zlata Yefimenko (EF Pictures).
  • Cannes Docs will have two Ukrainian docs in the making included in its selection of Spotlighted Projects, in partnership with the Ukrainian Institute: “Dad’s Lullaby” by Lesia Diak and “Silent Flood” by Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk. Additionally, for the first time, Docudays UA is one of Cannes Docs’ 2023 Festival Partners, alongside a prestigious list of other international doc film fests.

This year, Cannes Next will also step in for the first time to offer a wide range of events focusing on the innovative side of Ukraine. This one-of-a-kind program will present Ukrainian policy makers, creatives, companies and industry leaders who are disrupting and defining the future of creativity, digital innovation and technology in Europe and on the global stage. Highlights include:

  • MURALS is a “world premiere cinema experience” and interactive documentary inspired by Banksy’s murals in Ukraine that showcases the devastation of war in Ukraine through cuttingedge 3D scanning technology, light, sound, and game technologies. The experience will world premiere in Cannes on 19 May and will be presented in a one-of-a-kind volumetric screen installation. The innovative initiative is a Ukrainian-Polish-Spanish-US co-production from Mriya, ATM Virtual and Aggressive, and supported by the Polish Film Institute.
  • “Building Next Generation Regenerative AI Champions & Unicorns from Europe to Ukraine” panel, featuring industry leaders who will discuss the latest in regenerative AI technology. The event will feature speakers including Hovhannes Avoya, CEO of one of the world’s leading creativity platforms Picsart (powered by AI); Sander Saar, futurist & strategist at Red Bull Media House (formerly Walt Disney Company); and Anna Bulakh, Head of Ethics & Partnerships at Emmy-winning Ukrainian artificial voice company Respeecher powering the world’s best entertainment and film experiences from Superbowl to Star Wars.
  • Industry talks with Ukrainian government leaders, global innovators, executives and industry professionals, plus a fireside chat about building next-generation business and innovation collaboration between Ukraine and the EU.
  • Matchmaking sessions and invite-only showcase featuring world leading innovators and game-changers from Ukraine including Wantent, DressX, Room8Group, Respeecher, and special guests.

As the war in the region continues, the Marché du Film continues to boost efforts to support the Ukrainian creative, digital and film industries by bringing together other film festivals, business leaders, policy makers, international film funds and scriptwriters labs for this initiative launched in 2022.

To lend further support, the French Film Board (CNC – Centre National du Cinéma et de l’Image Animée) will host a conference that will focus on what can be done to keep the Ukrainian film industry active and productive and highlight which tools can help the Ukrainian film community continue to thrive during this difficult context.

Once again this year, the Marché du Film is offering market badges for Ukrainian filmmakers and entrepreneurs for this edition, which will take place in Cannes this year from 16-24 May (with the Festival concluding its activities on 27 May).