Cannes Market Launches Invite-Only Feature Film Pitching Event; Participant’s Liesl Copland To Kick Off Inaugural Edition With Keynote

EXCLUSIVE: The Cannes Film Festival’s Marché du Film has unveiled a new exclusive event, bannered the Cannes Investors Circle, aimed at connecting high-caliber, global feature film projects with private investors.

Unfolding May 21 at the market’s new Plage de Palmes beachfront venue, the afternoon event will present nine in-development projects with international potential to a select group of no-more than 50 private investors.

Details of the projects are under wraps, but the market has revealed they are budgeted at up to $13 million (12 million euros) and involve producers and directors who have previously won the Cannes Palme d’Or or Berlin’s Golden Bear.

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Participant Executive Vice President, Content and Platform Strategy Liesl Copland, will kick off the meeting with a keynote, offering her unique perspective on the modern media landscape, which will be open to all market badge-holders.

The entertainment industry veteran took up her newly-created role at Participant in early 2021 after 12 years at Endeavor Content, following stints as acting head at Netflix’s Red Envelope Entertainment and early career roles at Cinetic Media, the Tribeca Film Festival and IFP.

The keynote will be followed by a panel discussion entitled “Navigating Film Finance in a Changing World”.

Finance expert Elisa Alvares of Jacaranda Consultants, Rikke Ennis, CEO of REinvent Studios, Emilie Georges, Co-Founder & CEO of Paradise City, UK producer Mike Goodridge of Good Chaos, who is Official Selection this year with Jessica Hausner’s Club Zero will be joining the discussion moderated by industry consultant Wendy Mitchell.

The event will continue with an invitation-only pitching session which will be followed by private networking meetings and a cocktail reception.

The new initiative sees the market move into an activity traditionally unfolding organically on a more piecemeal basis up and down the Croisette during Cannes.  

“The aim of the Marché du Film with the Cannes Investors Circle is to support artistically and financially ambitious film projects,” said Cannes executive director Guillaume Esmiol.

For the first time, we are selecting projects of the highest caliber to present to top-tier investors. In light of the current financial landscape and Cannes’ unique positioning, we believe it’s relevant to explore new opportunities for funding through private investment, and we hope this inaugural event will grow in the coming years.”

The Marché du Film runs from May 16 to 24 and is expected to welcome more than 12,500 film industry professionals and present around 4,000 completed films and projects over its nine-day run.

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