The 38th Clermont-Ferrand International Film Festival, one of the biggest and most important short film festivals in the world, kicked off last week, on Friday 5th February. Running alongside the festival is the International Short Film Market, where film professionals from around the globe gather. Many organizations and film commissions have booths set up where they present their films as well as film festivals hosted in their country/region. Walking around the market are professionals from throughout the international film indusry, including those who are showing their films in the festival (actors, actresses, producers, directors, screenwriters, cameramen, technicians), festival programmers, festival directors, film distributors, film buyers, sponsors and journalists, to name but a few.
The festival screens numerous programs for the three official competitions: International Competition, National Competition (France), LABO Competition. In addition to this it also presents more focused, non-competition selection, such as the children’s programs and African program. This year there is even a special Swedish program. Having received 7,500 short film submissions from around the world, approximately 170 films in total have been selected to screen this year.
We, the SSFF & ASIA staff, are attending the film market, which is located in a building behind the main festival screening venue, from Monday 8th to Friday 12th February. Here we are promoting Japanese short films to the rest of the world and holding meetings with buyers, overseas film festivals and those working with short film content.
An overhead view of the market
Every evening “Happy Hour” events are held at selected market booths as of around 5:30pm, giving individual countries a chance to promote themselves, and professionals a chance to mingle and get to know each other better in a casual setting. Tonight there was a fantastic spread by the Italian booth which overflowed with wine, cheese and cured ham!
A view of the Italian spread. We will hold the Japan “Happy Hour” in collaboration with Sapporo Shorts Fest tomorrow, so please look forward to our report on this!
In other news, there was a screening of Japanese shorts, as selected by SSFF & ASIA, which started at 20:15 this evening (Tuesday 9th). The selection – made up of 6 shorts – included “Shabu-Shabu Spirit”, a film we produced in 2015 with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, and “Kerama Blue”, winner of last year’s Japan Competition Best Short Award
Japanese Shorts lineup in the catalogue
Though it was windy and rainy outside we welcomed an excellent turn out for the screening. With many Japanese comedies in the lineup, we were very pleased to see French audiences responding so well – there was even laughter to be heard during the screening! Thank you to all those who came to watch and enjoy these Japanese shorts!
In addition to “Happy Hour”, we will also be presenting a talk about the short film market in Japan at the Forum, located inside the Short Film Market, tomorrow. Please check back for further updates on how this went soon!