The Igor Iankovskyi Foundation and Monegasque Association Helping Hand together with the Ukrainian State Film Agency have been organising and conducting business lunches for Ukrainian and foreign cinema producers — Meet Ukrainian Producers! — at the Cannes Film Festival for already four years in a row. Presentation of new Ukrainian film projects in 360 panoramic restaurant of Radisson Blu Hotel Cannes has attracted more than 100 film industry professionals from all over the world
The business lunch was opened by Igor Iankovskyi, the founder of the Charity Foundation. «We were proud of the first successes of the Ukrainian cinematography 2-3 years ago, when films started to be made once again. What we are seeing now is the routine production of cinematic masterpieces, as it should be in such a talented country as Ukraine. Now that we got everything going, we are committed to succeeding. Finally, we have film makers who are well-known not only in the country but also abroad. Ukrainian cinematography was reborn after the years of stagnation. And this makes me so happy» said Igor Iankovskyi, a businessman and philanthropist.
Yevhen Nyschuk, the Minister of Culture of Ukraine, greeted the Meet Ukrainian Producers guests on behalf of the Ukrainian government and emphasized the importance of such events for the development of Ukrainian film industry. «This is a great opportunity to introduce the international professional film-making community to the modern identity of the Ukrainian film industry, share its achievements and make business connections between the Ukrainian and European film industries» said Minister of Culture Yevgen Nyschuk.
«We can see how Ukrainian events in Cannes are getting more popular with foreign film professionals each year. This is especially true for business lunches, as the number of people willing to participate has almost doubled this year. We see the tangible results of these meetings, and I am grateful to the Igor Iankovskyi Foundation for everything they do to support Ukrainian film makers» said Pylyp Illienko, the Head of the Ukrainian State Film Agency.
It is no coincidence that two Ukrainian films premièred in two of this year’s official competitions at the Cannes Film Festival, the largest and most prestigious film festival in the world.
The full-length début of the young Ukrainian director Nariman Aliev, EVGE (Homeward), was selected for competition in the second most significant programme of the Cannes Film Festival, Un Certain Regard, and Anna by Decel Berenson (co-produced by Ukraine, Israel, and the UK) was selected for the short films competition. Both of these films were created with the support of the Ukrainian State Film Agency.
During the business lunch, foreign producers were presented seven Ukrainian films of different stages of production:
- Chervonyi. No Front Line, period drama directed by Zaza Buadze;
- My thoughts are silent, dramedy directed by Antonio Lukićh;
- Legacy Of Lies, spy thriller directed by Andrian Bol;
- Dovbush, period drama directed by Oles Sanin;
- Eastman, drama directed by Andrii Ivaniuk;
- Black Raven, period drama directed by Taras Tkachenko;
- Ragnabor, adventure film directed by Volodymyr Kharchenko-Kulykovskyi.
Ukrainian producers including Alla Belaya, Dmitry Sukhanov, Andriy Suyarko, Volodymyr Filippov, Sashko Chubko, Pavlo Sushko, and Oleksandr Nedbaiev presented slideshows and trailers for new films. After the official part, the guests went to the buffet reception to mingle with foreign colleagues while having a glass of champagne.
As it turned out, many international producers are not the first-timers at business lunches organised by the Igor Iankovskyi Foundation. And some of them even found their partners in Ukraine at these meetings, like Susanna Duellmann, a German film producer. In 2018, at a similar business lunch, she met producers Pavlo Sushko and Oleksandr Nedbaiev and took interest in their project. This year, she took part in their presentation as a full co-producer.
We should remind that the Ukrainian National Pavilion was open at Marché du Film of the Cannes Film Festival from 14 May until 23 May.