Film France previously operated autonomously even though it was funded by the CNC.
The CNC also launched the new service of attractiveness as part of the organization’s desire to better promote the competitiveness and attractiveness of all aspects of the French sectors of cinema, television and video games in France. ‘international.
French producer and manager Mathieu Ripka now heads both departments.
“Film France will continue to be the one-stop-shop for filming international productions or for inquiries about filming in France. Its activities remain broadly the same as those of many staff, ”explained Ripka.
The attractiveness department will focus on internationalization. It will also ensure coordination with all the various operators of the French film and television production sectors and in particular the network of local film commissions in the country.
The new structure has a supplement of € 800,000, in addition to Film France’s previous budget, to finance many new initiatives. These include a new promotional campaign, slated for launch in 2022, an expanded presence in Los Angeles and the extension of promotional activities to the video game industry.
The TRAVEL factor
Before the Covid-19 pandemic, France had already seen its profile as an international filming location begin to develop in recent years, largely thanks to the introduction in 2009 of the tax cut for international production. (TRIP).
Originally offering a 20% discount on eligible production expenses up to a ceiling of € 4 million when it was launched in 2009, it has since been increased to 30% of eligible expenses up to a ceiling of 30 million euros, and at 40% if a substantial amount of VFX’s work is done in France.
Among the large-scale international productions that have landed in France in recent years, we can cite The last duel, The French dispatch, Still water, John Wick 4 and Mission : Impossible – Fallout. The country has also started to take advantage of the wave of the high-end drama boom to host program shoots, including Queen of serpents, Emilie in Paris, Atlanta and Modern family.
Ripka recognizes that there is a widely held international belief that France remains an expensive place to shoot.
“That’s what people think, but when you look at the numbers taking into account what’s on offer here and the high cost of crewing in places like the UK, France ends up being very competitive.” , he said.
“There’s also our know-how and our pool of technicians and talent is one of the best in the world, which is why directors like Wes Anderson, Ridley Scott and more recently David Fincher like to shoot here. ”
The new attractiveness department and Film France now come under the CNC’s digital department, with Ripka reporting to its director Vincent Florant. The management oversees the CNC’s support to French digital and technical industries, including its film and television studios, and manages TRIP.
“All of these areas are at the heart of France’s international attractiveness and, in turn, this international attractiveness is at the heart of the CNC’s overall strategy,” said Florant.
Wider French stimulus plans
He notes that the new international dynamic is part of the France 2030 investment plan, relaunching Covid-19, which aims to revitalize the country’s industrial sectors through innovation and green technologies.
As part of this program, 600 million euros have been allocated to the film and audiovisual industries to be invested from 2022, over a period of five years, in capacity building, vocational training and innovation in the entire sector.
Florant suggests that this provides the perfect opportunity for France to modernize its studios and bring in new capabilities, which would put the country on a par with its neighbors in terms of studio space.
In a separate initiative, the CNC earlier this year launched the € 10 million ‘Modernization Shock’ initiative aimed at projects to create new studio spaces, modernize existing sites or build infrastructure in the field of digital production, while respecting or encouraging sustainable development.
After a call for projects in January, 20 winners were announced at the Cannes Film Festival in July. They included eight studio initiatives, such as the City of Nice’s plan to renovate its historic Victorine Studios and 12 other projects supporting companies involved in post-production, animation and special effects.
Florant cites Provence Studio’s zero-energy training in the south of France, involving 28,000 square meters of solar panels, as an example of the type of project the CNC had wanted to encourage.
He adds that the € 10 million “Modernization shock” financing line has generated an additional € 160 million in private investment, and suggests that the money put on the table as part of the France 2030 plan will have an impact. similar impact.
“The overall strategy is that this public money will attract private investment,” he says.
Florant also reveals that the CNC will focus its approach to international attractiveness on three geographical areas: Paris and the greater Ile de France region, the Mediterranean from Nice to Montpellier and the Hauts de France region bordering Belgium and also close to the United Kingdom. United.
Ripka and Florant both recognize that the past two years have been a difficult time for the locations industry in France due to the pandemic.
However, they underline the fact that the local film and television industry has been operating at almost full capacity since June 2020, thanks to a special public-private compensation fund covering French productions against losses linked to Covid-19.
“This means that the sector is completely up to date and ready to accommodate international productions once they start to come back as before,” said Florant.