The Business Street is growing and moving to the Maxi.
Following the sixth edition (October 27th – 31st) which closed with a 4% increase in participants, from 2012 the International Rome Film Market will be held at the Museo Maxi, that will provide areas for screenings, conferences and meetings between members of the trade.
It is a sign of “the passage of the movie market and the festival towards an age of awareness”, stresses director Roberto Cicutto.
So, like in a coming-of-age novel, the growth of The Business Street leads us to a new setting and a greater rationalization of its functions. New Cinema Network and Industry Books, held this year at the Casa del Cinema, will both go to the Maxi.
Whilst not completely abandoning the Via Veneto – its hotels will continue to host members of the trade - the informal meetings between buyers and sellers which, until now, have been held on the terrace of the Hotel Bernini Bristol, will move to the Maxi, as will the professional conference and, possibly the most interesting innovation, the screening rooms.
The new location will strengthen the relationship with the festival since the Auditorium is just a 5 minute walk away from the Museo Maxi, and having the screening rooms in the same place as the meetings will make it possible to optimize the time available.
And that is not all. As Cicutto explains:
“Until now, the market’s screening rooms were movie theaters in the center of Rome with 250, 300, 400 seats that were often frequented by only 4, 7, 12 buyers.
This does not mean that the screenings were not successful but simply that there were only 4, 7 or 12 international distributors interested in seeing that particular movie. Being one of seven people watching a movie in a 400 seat theater is not very pleasant and can also influence your opinion.
Viewing a movie in the small 15-25 seat theaters that will be built here at the Maxi, equipped for digital screenings and all concentrated in the same place, will certainly be a better way of viewing the products”.
We had a taste of the type of performances we can expect at the Maxi at the screening of “Talents at Work”, a panoramic selection of trailers of Italian movies on set or in post-production, organized by Cinecittà Luce, ANICA [Italian Association of Cinematographic Audiovisual and Multimedia Industries] and UNEFA [Union of Film and Audiovisual Exporters], which was much appreciated by the international buyers and sellers.
Another important piece of news is that the seventh edition will be returning to the traditional dates: from October 18th-21st 2012, midway between Mipcom at Cannes and the AFM in Santa Monica, thus avoiding the excessive and, according to the organizers, harmful proximity to the US market, which is held at the beginning of November.
With this “relaunch”, TBS aims to capitalize on the last edition’s excellent results: 820 accredited visitors, 280 buyer s, 93 sellers from 61 companies, 233 producers at TBS and NCN who were able to access the 140 screenings of 116 films; 32 market premieres; 117 titles in the video library; 23 workshops and other events, the main ones organized in cooperation with ANICA and Cinecittà Luce.
We have reported the comments of members of the trade attending the latest edition of The Business Street in a separate section.
These offer a partial contribution to the assessment of the quality of the strategies announced.
There is no doubt that the move to the Maxxi is an excellent idea as far as the screenings are concerned, but the concept of having “everything under the same roof” is slightly more delicate as it greatly reduces the role of the hotels on Via Veneto, with the consequent effects on the foreign guests’ perception of the city.
The organizer are obviously well aware that the success of the formula used for TBS is to avoid forcing sellers into rigid structures, for instance the stands you normally see at markets, inviting them instead relate to each other in a “softer”, more relaxed way that strengthens rather than lessens the event’s commercial dimension.
The future and success of The Business Street will depend on how the passage from the informality of Via Veneto to the more “official” setting of the Maxxi is handled.
Cinema&Video International, novembre 2011
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