SARDINIA/A very animated Region

Nevina Satta – Sardinia Film Commission

The Fondazione Sardegna Film Commission will be focusing on animation over the next few years as a driving sector for boosting and expanding audiovisuals in Sardinia and for promoting the region.

We talk to the director, Nevina Satta, about animation projects.
Solicited by Cartoon Italia, the national association of animated content producers,Cartoon Digital will be arriving in Italy for the first time, in Cagliari, from May 21st to 23rd.
Strongly requested by the Fondazione Sardegna Film Commission, this is a seminar for sector professionals to discuss the latest developments in digital animation and entertainment for linked screens organized annually by the Cartoon MEDIA association in various European countries.

New for this edition is Italian Days on Monday 20th and Tuesday 21st, two sessions dedicated to young talents and training in Europe.
“This is an excellent opportunity for Sardinia” comments Nevina Satta: “we couldn’t have hoped for a better start for our region which is embarking on a transversal path to promote local talents and attract international operators. It is the cutting of a symbolic ribbon, the one with Cartoon Digital that is bringing its network of European producers back to Italy with the support of Cartoon Italia and the investment of Rai Ragazzi and with the support of the main European broadcasters who will share the winning strategies for presenting their portfolios and original projects with the young talents in training”.

The Sardegna Film Commission has obtained € 1 million from the Region to fund the start up phase of the NASNuova Animazione in Sardegna (New Animation in Sardinia) project and € 500,000 for the music and sound for cinema training Campus.
The first project, in particular, was announced together with Cartoon Italia during the MIA in Rome last October.
The inspirational model was that of the Pôle Image Magelis in Angoulême where, over ten years, a network of businesses, schools and institutions dedicated to animation and digital works has been created in the region in which over 100 companies and 1200 technicians have settled.

Italian animation companies are also asking for spaces and adequate communication networks in addition to a system of production incentives. What do you request from the companies?
“NAS aims to be an experimental production platform that starts from an awareness that here the realization of projects as well as high level training activities are activated from scratch. The funding received is used for the start up phase of the laboratory promoted; we ask that anyone trained is immediately employed on projects to be produced in Sardinia”.

The spaces you have identified are in Cagliari c/o the former Manifattura Tabacchi as well as inside the scientific and technological Park of Pula. This is where the production center dedicated to animation will be located, a pioneering project in Italy. Are any businesses already interested?
“We define it as a permanent production and high level training laboratory. We are concluding agreements in Europe and with some North American investors, with particular attention to Canada, and with some Indian investors – all the agreements include exchanges of skills and certified training courses.

Aerial view of Cagliari, capital of Sardinia

It is a model of infrastructural investment, not just of an economic nature. We want to boost the international professional qualification experience and spread it throughout the island offering new expertise and employment opportunities in the more poorly served areas as well.
This will allow us to bring the island’s younger generations closer to the audiovisual production chain.
Cagliari is the entry point to Sardinia but the project envisages the involvement of the whole island.
In phase 2 we will open in Nuoro, in the center of Sardinia; then we will aim for phase 3, in Alghero and northern Sardinia.
It is an ambitious project with a strong green vocation in terms of the content promoting sustainability as well as the production models to be experimented.
By challenging the economic models of an industrial development that hasn’t worked here, the creative industries represent a real turning point for the community and Sardinia.
We hold all the cards for playing an important role in the Italy system. Environmentally sustainable structures and infrastructures that are able to guarantee energy savings as well as responsible animation using natural materials, reusing objects for the stop motion…

In addition to the million for the NAS project, you have funded other initiatives in the animation sector including scholarships for specialization courses in recognized animation schools, computer graphics and special effects in Italy or abroad aimed at students aged under 35 who were born or are resident in Sardinia. How is this project going?
“The preliminary investigations are under- way but I can announce that we have had lots of applications.
We are counting on an increase in requests for the next open calls we will be launching from May for the training phase on the island.
Cartoon Digital aims to be a symbolic launch-pad for generating teams of 2D and 3D animators. We are expecting a very intense season”.

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