4th & 5th December 2012, Liege, Belgium
Belgium has not set up any specific programmes to support the producers of 3D content. However, is this even necessary, when in fact all the national and regional investment funds in the country have already been supporting stereoscopic 3D cinema (S-3D) for a long time!
The best financing system in Europe … also open to S-3D !
First, there is the Belgian tax shelter, considered by experts to be one of the best in Europe. In 2011, the system allowed the private industry to invest nearly 170 million Euros in the Belgian film industry. Directors such as Ben Stassen (from Liège), considered as the high priest of S-3D film in Europe and beyond, have thus been able to develop a considerable S-3D film industry, thanks to the Belgian tax-shelter. Since “Fly Me To The Moon” in 2007, with a budget of seven million Euros, the company nWave has produced Samy 1 and 2, each with a budget of around 20 million Euros. The Belgian tax shelter provided half of their budgets.
Wallonia, What else?
Wallonia (the French-speaking region in Belgium), through its investment fund Wallimage, also developed intelligent financing tools to support the development of its industry. This led to an increase in know-how and film experience in the Southern part of the country, and brought many international studios here, especially to Liège. It was there that part of the industry grouped together in the Pôle Image de Liège, in a recently renovated former industrial building, now equipped with leading edge tools to the benefit of the audiovisual service providers.
Liège, European S-3D capital
Studio Waooh!, the French subsidiary of Toon Alliance, recently set up an animation studio in the city. Its first results include Patrice Leconte’s latest film, “Le Magasin des Suicides”, an animated film in stereoscopic 2D. You won’t be surprised to hear that the entire stereoscopy was created in Liège. Another example is the English series “Which is Witch?”, consisting of 26 episodes of 26 minutes. It is entirely filmed in S-3D in Liège (the shoot started mid-November 2012 and will be spread over five months), thanks to a partnership between the Pôle Image de Liège and another international company, which set up office there, TSF.be, a Belgian subsidiary of the French TSF.
Furthermore, we should also mention companies such as Digital Graphics and Mikros Image Liège, who are far from newcomers in the S-3D film sector, but also Alterface, Belle Productions, Dreamwall, EVS, Intopix, Keywall, Miysis, Softkinetic, VR Intelligence, all of them located in Wallonia and working with the 3rd dimension. What is the common point between all these companies : all of them are member of TWIST, the Walloon cluster of cinema and digital media.
TWIST, the Walloon S-3D cluster
Finally, TWIST, the Walloon film and digital media cluster, and the University of Liège joined forces to create 3D Stereo MEDIA, which has been in existence since 2009 in Liège and has become a key event in Europe. This event is directed at all professionals working with 3-SD. It never stops expanding; in 2011 it generated the first S-3D film market in Europe – 3D Film Mart, organised in collaboration with Peacefulfish and the Media Programme of the European Commission.
3D Film Mart 2012…
3D Film Mart is a selection of 20 European film projects in the development stage. It is a major meeting place for investors in the S-3D sector, a meeting place for S-3D content professionals; a place to discover many more things… Over a hundred producers, not only from Europe, but also from China, Russia and the United States will participate in the 2012 event.
… at a glance!
• Twenty European projects in development have been selected. They will be presented to a jury of international investors (tax shelter intermediate players, regional funds, producers, distributors). The best pitch will receive a €3,000 prize.
• 3D FM starts on Tuesday 4th December at 11am and ends on Wednesday 5th December at 6pm.
• Admission to 3D FM is 125 euros. The fee covers the cost of the lunches for December 4th & 5th.
• The Film market and the network evening of 4th December will take place at the Hotel Crowne Plaza in Liège.