(AFM), at least according to the organizers of the recently concluded Santa Monica, California-based event.
Buying companies rose eight percent to 718; buying executives’ attendance was up seven percent to 1,523; and overall attendance climbed four percent to 7,988. There was a four percent increase in exhibiting companies (356 in total).
China, Germany and Japan had the strongest growth in attendance in terms of buying companies. Not surprisingly, fewer buyers came from PIIGS countries: Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain, but that decline was fortunately compensated by BRIC nations: Brazil, Russia, India and China.
On the second day of the market, Hong Kong Day, organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, put the spotlight on Hong Kong for the second year in a row. The day kicked off with a ribbon-cutting ceremony, followed by a seminar about co-producing in Hong Kong and China, and an invite-only cocktail receptions.
The first AFM Conference Series, which featured sessions on financing, production, marketing, distribution and pitching, was sold out. “Selling out the new AFM Conference Series in its first year underscores the AFM’s relevance to the production community,” AFM Managing Director Jonathan Wolf said in a release.
Among the industry insiders speaking at the five-day event were director/writer Rob Reiner and the stars and director of new thriller Columbus Circle — Kevin Pollak, Selma Blair and George Gallo.
Academy Award-winning director Ron Howard also attended the first day of the market.
Here are some more AFM numbers for you:
415 films screened (28 of which were in 3D)
69 world premieres
10 market premieres
Films from 35 countries
More than 700 total screenings
An extensive report on AFM will be published in VideoAge’s December pre-NATPE issue.