Eleven development grants worth €9,000 and two co-production grants worth €50,000 attributed to filmmakers from a diverse selection of countries
This fall, the Hubert Bals Fund (HBF) of International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) has selected eleven film projects from the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Africa, Latin America and Asia for its Script and Project Development Scheme, which receive grants worth a combined total of €99,000. In addition, two projects have been selected for the NFF+HBF Co-production Scheme and receive €50,000 each from the Netherlands Film Fund. The HBF fall selection 2019 includes a majority of films originating from countries less represented in the film industry.
Marit van den Elshout, head of IFFR Pro: “While HBF is consistently dedicated to supporting a diverse selection of international filmmakers, we are particularly excited that the HBF 2019 fall selection will be supporting projects from countries with smaller film industries and thus less extensively represented in the film landscape – including Haiti, Rwanda, Dominican Republic, Paraguay, Nicaragua and Vietnam.”
Fay Breeman, HBF manager: “The list of selected projects includes anticipated new films by established filmmakers. However, it mostly reconfirms the HBF’s commitment to supporting new talent: the majority of the selection are debut films. We are excited to see what these talented filmmakers will accomplish.”
HBF’s Script and Project Development scheme is a grant that can be used for script and project development of feature film projects, and is divided into two sections: HBF Bright Future, for feature films by debut and second-time filmmakers, and HBF Voices, for feature films by filmmakers more advanced in their careers. All projects receive a €9,000 grant. The HBF Script and Project Development scheme is also supported by the NFF+HBF Co-development scheme and the Tiger Film Mecenaat.
With the exception of Pepe, la imaginación en el tercer Cine by critically acclaimed Dominican director Nelson Carlo de los Santos Arias – known for his debut Cocote (IFFR 2018) – all directors selected for HBF Bright Future are debuting their first feature films. Among the selected debuting directors, many have received awards and nominations for their short films, including Rwandan filmmaker Samuel Ishimwe, whose short film Imfura (2017) won the Silver Bear for Best Short Film at the Berlinale 2018.
• Pepe, la imaginación en el tercer cine, Nelson Carlo de los Santos Arias, Dominican Republic/Colombia
1948 by Felipe Guerrero and A Road With No End by Mouly Surya will receive HBF Voices support – a grant intended for filmmakers more advanced in their careers. The Colombian filmmaker Guerrero previous films Corta (2012) and Oscuro Animal (2016) were both supported by HBF and had their world premieres in Rotterdam. Both of Indonesian filmmaker Surya’s previous films were previously screened at IFFR; What They Talk about When They Talk about Love at IFFR 2013, and Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts had its Dutch premiere at IFFR 2018, after a world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival 2017.
The NFF+HBF Co-production Scheme is a joint initiative by the Netherlands Film Fund (NFF) and the Hubert Bals Fund (HBF). Two grants of €50,000 are awarded to two projects with Dutch co-production partners. Both selected projects have received HBF development support in the past. Both NFF+HBF selected films originate from countries that are not yet strongly represented in the film world – Paraguay and Nicaragua, respectively.
La memoria del monte by Paraguayan director Paz Encina will be co-produced by Revolver Amsterdam. The film, which touches on the urgent issues surrounding indigenous groups in Paraguay, received the HBF Script and Project Development grant in 2017. Encina pitched first feature film Hamaca Paraguaya at CineMart 2005 and the film saw its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival 2006 – where it received the FIPRESCI Award.
La hija de todas las rabias by Nicaraguan director Laura Baumeister, co-produced with the Dutch production company Halal, follows a neglected eight-year-old child called Maria in Nicaragua. The film was selected for the HBF Script and Project Development grant in 2018. Baumeister’s short film Isabel Im Winter (2014) was screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016 and her recent short film Ombligo de auga had its world premiere at IFFR 2019. Representing Nicaraguan film, La hija de todas las rabias will be the first-ever female-directed film and the fifth feature-film to be released from Nicaragua.