On 21 October, the Riga International Film Festival (RIGA IFF), will be organising two consecutive panel discussions in cooperation with the Council of Europe and the National Film Centre on series production and necessary support mechanisms in Europe. Supported by the Ministries of Culture and Foreign Affairs, the panel discussion in Riga will bring together industry experts with extensive experience in series production and financing. The panel will include Dr Simone Emelius from the German public broadcaster ZDF and Jarmo Lampela from the Finnish public broadcaster YLE.
The Council of Europe has just announced a Eurimages pilot programme with the aim to support high-quality European series – a total of 7 million EUR will be available in the first year. In the context of this initiative, industry professionals will gather in Riga to discuss the overall landscape of series production in Europe, foster cooperation between exhibitors and creators, and assess the key criteria for a favourable ecosystem for series within the European film industry. A separate discussion with the Baltic Film Centres and audiovisual policy makers will explore the production and financing of series in a regional context, raising the crucial question of how to ensure the production of high-quality national series and how to promote international co-productions.
The series format has seen a radical rise in popularity in both the world and in Europe over the past decade and is becoming increasingly popular as the number of people using streaming platforms grows. Even directors such as Martin Scorsese have worked on series, while the historical British miniseries Chernobyl (2019), which was shot in Lithuania, has gone down in film history as one of the best examples of the format. In Latvia, too, series production has recently intensified, with the success of Emily. Queen of the Press (2021) on streaming platforms, on television, and in cinemas. This summer, two further miniseries wrapped filming – Pansija pilī and Soviet Jeans, produced by Mistrus Media and TASSE Film, respectively.
Cultural policy makers and representatives of the film industry, as well as other interested parties, are welcome to attend the discussion on 21 October in the Barons meeting room at Radission Blu Elizabete Hotel at 11:00. More information about the upcoming discussion and its participants can be found on the RIGA IFF website.
Riga has been chosen as the venue for this discussion to mark Latvia’s Presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe from May to October this year.