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Focus on Poland at Les Arcs Film Festival

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By Angela Barnes
Focus on Poland at Les Arcs Film Festival

Poland is the focus at this year’s Les Arcs Film Festival, with the event putting recent Polish films and upcoming projects in the spotlight.

Cold War is one of the country’s success stories that has helped raise its profile in the industry. The film is also a contender for an Oscar next year, in the foreign language category.

Set against the backdrop of the 1950s Cold War in Poland, it tells the story of two people of differing backgrounds and temperaments beginning an almost impossible romance.

Euronews spoke to the producer of the film, Ewa Puszczynska, about its success - and to get her thoughts on why the attention has turned to Poland.

“Poland is growing, the industry is growing, you know, we are more and more visible internationally, our films really travel, you know they are huge successes in the festivals and in the sales as well. And it is not only Cold War.

“Recently, the European Film Awards last Saturday, it was not only Cold War that got five awards, but also there was the best animation of the year 2018 that was a Polish animation.

“Also what is very interesting and intriguing for our international community is this 30 percent cash rebate that is going to be introduced into Poland next year, so I think that is why it is very interesting and useful for people to know what is going on,” she said.

The cash rebate means producers from other countries who work with Polish producers on a project can also benefit from it, once it is introduced in 2019.

“It can be used on co-productions and also on the it means foreign producers coming to shoot in Poland will save 30 percent of the eligible spend of the money,” she added.

Cold War was a big budget film and it needed much more money with people ready to take the risk, Eva explained. The cash rebate, a great incentive for producers to help meet budget demands in the future.

“We had the financers from the UK, and also the financers from France. For each territory there was more than one financing source. In Poland, there were all together we were able to cover the finance plan in our budget,” she said.

Poland also has five bilateral co-production agreements with France, Israel, India, Canada, and New Zealand, in order to pool together talent and resources.

Poland’s strong home market was also pointed out at a festival presentation, where it was cited as the sixth biggest market in Europe, with 20 million film admissions this year.

It’s hoped the cash rebate incentive, successful films, and the country’s growing reputation as a place to do film business, will continue to attract talent and investment.