An initiative of the EU MEDIA Programme with the support of the Italian Government
Since 1992 MEDIA Salles has been promoting the European cinema and its circulation at theatrical level

MEDIA Salles at Cinema Expo International 2005,
Amsterdam (NL), 27- 30 June




1st July 2005

Italian Cinema Worldwide
The MEDIA Salles’ “European Producer of the Year" goes to Elda Ferri

The Award to Elda Ferri, producer of some of the most outstanding films on the horizon of Italian cinema, was the central focus of Italian Cinema Worldwide, the new initiative by MEDIA Salles, conceived along the same, well-established lines as Focus on Europe, in order to highlight a particular aspect of Europe’s rich film-making tradition, Italian cinema. Realised thanks to the support of the Italian Government, this project will bring the latest Italian productions to the foreground at markets that include those reserved up to now almost exclusively for US productions, such as Kino Expo in Russia and CineAsia in China.
Elda Ferri, producer of films of the calibre of Life Is Beautiful by Roberto Benigni, Gianni Amelio’s The House Keys and Roberto Faenza’s Jona Who Lived in the Whale and Sostiene Pereira, recalled how the success of her films went hand in hand with “the profound understanding and the strong human and cultural relationship that has arisen with artists to whom the Italian – and not only Italian – cinema owes a good deal: Nicoletta Braschi, Roberto Faenza and Roberto Benigni”.
Enthusiastic applause for the trailers of past successes, presented to the professional players from all over Europe who were present in the theatre, along with a short preview of Benigni’s latest film The Tiger and The Snow, which will be in Italian cinemas on 14 October this year.
Elisabetta Brunella, Secretary General of MEDIA Salles, commented: “from several quarters, there emerges a demand by exhibitors from all countries for a greater variety of films, able to draw spectators who do not identify fully with the offer from Hollywood. As recent surveys show that, in the United States, too, a significant sector of audiences believes there is a drop in the quality of films made in the USA, interesting prospects open up for Italian and European cinema”.
MEDIA Salles’ Focus on Europe closed yesterday with another important event: the presentation of the "International Star Award" to Bruno Ganz during the “Final Luncheon and Awards Ceremony”. Of Swiss-German origin, with a significant theatrical career and many film successes, including his role in Bread and Tulips by Silvio Soldini, Ganz recently played Adolf Hitler in Downfall. A film that opened up old wounds and sparked off debate, this has been one of the few German films to seriously cross national boundaries, being released in as many as 31 countries, totalling over 5 million spectators in the countries of the European Union in 2004 and receiving an Academy Award nomination as Best Foreign Language Film.
Mette Schramm, President of the Danish exhibitors’ association and member of the MEDIA Salles’ Executive Committee, presented the Award to Bruno Ganz with the following words: “with this Award, MEDIA Salles and Cinema Expo wish to thank you and acknowledge before exhibitors from all over Europe, your exceptional interpretation in the film Downfall which in my country, Denmark, as in many other European countries, has had great and unexpected success: in fact the film was at the top of box office ratings for as many as 16 weeks and is still in seventh place. Congratulations!”.

During Italian Cinema Worldwide, MEDIA Salles also distributed a cd-card containing 10 trailers of internationally distributed Italian productions.

In the “Focus on Europe” section of the website ( information is published on all the films of which MEDIA Salles screened trailers at Cinema Expo, as well as on the European Film of the Year, Merry Christmas.

Cinema Expo International is the traditional meeting for European exhibitors, which brings together over 1,200 professional operators from all countries. The event includes seminars on different aspects of the cinema industry and the presentation of films about to be released. The programme of Cinema Expo International includes an exhibition of equipment and services for cinemas, from theatre design to the most technologically advanced products.

The MEDIA Salles project operates within the framework of the European Union's MEDIA Programme, with the support of the Italian Government.
The end objective of MEDIA Salles is to foster theatrical distribution of European audiovisual products. This aim is pursued both by high profile campaigns involving Europe's cinema exhibitors and by initiatives to raise the visibility of European productions with industry players and potential audiences, creating specialized information channels on a global scale. Thus the current initiatives from MEDIA Salles dovetail in a program with a triple focus - training, promotion and information - and maximum combined effect.

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