Asian Film Market
On October 11th, Asian Film Market 2016 successfully came to a close by providing a new trend in the new media contents market. Furthermore, the Market showed solid stability with the facilitation of multiple sales of Korean films including Asura: The City of Madness and Pandora at the sales booths representing Korean films and with many IP deals made at the 2nd E-IP (Entertainment Intellectual Property) Market.
This year, 157 companies from 24 nations opened sales booths at the Asian Film Market, owing to the great deal of interest in opening E-IP booths. This level of participation was consistent with last year’s participation despite the occurrence of various changes including the decrease in the overall market budget, the separate opening of BIFCOM (Busan International Film Commission& Industry Showcase), and being pressed for time during the preparation period. Furthermore, the actual number of participating companies increased this year. Moreover, the Asian Film Market has grown to become a total entertainment market that comprises diverse industries such as original TV & movie script companies; webtoons, web novels and literary publishers; as well as foreign sales companies and national agencies from various Asian countries. The success of this year’s events was confirmed by such figures as on average 3,000 visitors per day, 550 meetings facilitated at APM, more than 30 meetings held per day at Korean sales booths, and an increase in deals made at the E-IP Market.
Significant results were had by the representatives of sales booths that opened at the Market from October 8th to 11th.. For Korean sales companies with new lineups, there was an increase in the number of deals made and the profit made compared to last year. In the case of Contents Panda, one of the Korean sales companies, recently had huge success with <Train To Busan> in the international market. Due to such success, Contents Panda gained much interest from the buyers attending the Market for their next lineup <Pandora> and received many inquiries about making a package deal. M-Line Distribution had a more than full schedule where they had to double- or triple book meetings in one time slot. M-Line Distribution is the sales representative of this year’s Opening Film at BIFF, A Quiet Dream. CJ E&M received much attention from the buyers for <Master> and their co-productions in Asia including <The Housemaid> (co-production with Vietnam), <Cado Cado: Doctor 101> (co-production with Indonesia), and <Suddenly 20> (co-production with Thailand, remake of Korea’s Miss Granny). Showbox introduced <LUCK-KEY> which is based on a Japanese original work and will open in theaters this Thursday, and it received much attention with <Vanishing Time: A Boy Who Returned>, opening in theaters this coming November.
Lotte Entertainment had many fruitful meetings with Asian buyers at the Market. Especially, their new lineup <Will You Be There?> received much attention from the buyers.
Many other sales companies reported an increase in the number of meetings and in the profit made at the Market. Moreover, even those companies who opened their sales booths for the first time at the Market this year reported to have had many meetings. These companies include Kadokawa Corporation at the E-IP Market booths, webtoons publisher DCON E&M and Kyobobook (Macaroon).
The 19th Asian Project Market (APM) proved once again as the Asia’s most prestigious investment/coproduction event, with over 550 meetings held between APM project teams and international producers and investors. Among the 27 official APM 2016 projects from 16 different nations, <Undefined> by Korean director SEO Eunyoung, <White Building> by Cambodian director NEANG Kavich, and <Love and Vengeance> by Indonesian director Edwin were particularly popular.
At the E-IP Market sales booths, numerous meetings took place between representatives of Book To Film and E-IP Pitching works and potential producers, investors and distributors looking to secure original E-IP rights. Furthermore, the publishers without officially-selected works in the E-IP Market opened their own sales booths where they held numerous meetings as well. On the first day of this year’s Market, Summer, A Corpse from Nowhere by PARK Yeon-sun, a Book To Film selection, signed a deal one day earlier than the first deal signed at last year’s market. Creative Group Ggoolddanzy also secured a production agreement with Jin Films for the screenplay 49 Days Farewell. As for buyers attending the E-IP Market, Chinese companies such as Alibaba Pictures, Huace Union, Huayi Brothers, and Wanda Media all actively participated in meetings with E-IP holders.
More than 100 meetings were held between publishers representing Book To Film works and production & distribution companies including Sidus, Showbox, Cineguru, and Opus Pictures. The representatives of works in the E-IP Pitching selection had more than 150 meetings which resulted in fruitful meetings where they discussed about sales, the adaptation of the IP to another platform, as well as the purchase of IP by territory including Thailand and Vietnam. Not only in the officially-selected works, the buyers were greatly interested in other IP works owned by the representatives of Book To Film and E-IP Pitching selections. DCON E&M, All That Story, and Dab Publishing all reported that they were inquired about their other IPs.
Held during the Market, the E-IP Financing Seminar offered a new agenda for trans-media contents through the discussions had by the representatives from TGCK Partners, Kakao/Podotree, SK Broadband, and Wadiz. The seminar presented the possibility of changes in the production system if the contents that are produced according to various platforms rather than the contents adapted to platforms could have business value in the IT powerhouse Korea’s markets. The E-IP Legal Seminar also received plaudits for providing one-step-ahead information for producers. Also, practical advice on legal protection of the E-IP format was offered as a free service to the market participants which was a huge success where all the time slots were filled up even before opening up the legal service booth. Furthermore, New Story Creation Project Pitching held by Korea Creative Contents Agency (KOCCA) were flooded with meeting inquiries. As such, various events held at the Market showed new changes in the film/media production scene in a trans-media era.
At the Market Screenings of Asian Film Market 2016, 63 films from 13 nations were presented with a total of 68 screenings. Among them, 15 films were official selections at the 21st Busan International Film Festival and 50 films were market premieres which accounts for about 73% of the total films screened at the Market. Through the Online Screening service, a total of 214 films including 172 BIFF official selections were made available for the participants to watch online at their convenience. The Online Screening service is available to Market badge holders until October 31st at the Online Screening Website (http://os.asianfilmmarket.org/).