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Locarno Pro is set to launch a new project that will give voice to the new generation of film professionals, listening to their opinions on the challenges posed by current changes in the industry. Named U30, the project will involve 24 participants, all aged under 30, recruited from Locarno Industry Academy International initiatives around the world. They will meet up during the Locarno Film Festival for an exchange of views and ideas on the theme The Audience of the Future.
Locarno Pro will play host to the U30 project this year. The participants are selected from different Locarno Industry Academy International attendees in Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the USA, and joined by some young professionals from Africa and Asia. The 24 under30 will be the proactive force in a specially designed program covering three days (9-11 August) during the Locarno Pro initiative.
In a society witnessing rapid change in audiovisual consumption patterns, the new generation of film professionals will have an enormous impact on the industry of the future. They will need to face constant innovation, embracing new technologies and above all developing ways of keeping demand focused on auteur cinema, for which the traditional audience has radically altered its audiovisual viewing and purchasing habits, in the age of streaming platforms, smartphones and social media.
Nadia Dresti, Head of Locarno Pro: “This initiative raises a number of questions, but the most urgent is: do young people have to follow the business models developed by the film industry, or should not rather the film industry, both Hollywood and the rest of the world, be adapting to the countless ways in which audiovisual content can be consumed today?”
U30 is conceived as a platform offering a space for young professionals wanting to voice their concerns on highly topical issues. The program will act as a think tank aimed at stimulating the exchange of views and promoting analysis of new strategies to face the challenges of the future. Participants will also be invited to explore the other Locarno Pro initiatives, enhancing the opportunities for networking and synergies with other industry attendees in Locarno.
The participants have been chosen from Locarno Industry Academies in New York, Thessaloniki, Beirut, São Paulo, Morelia, Valparaíso, Panama and of course Locarno. The two criteria for selection are that they be aged under 30 and working in the film industry as sales agents, distributors, programmers, exhibitors or in marketing and public relations.
U30 Project Manager Marcello Paolillo: “In the run-up to the event we carried out a survey of participants, asking them specifically “What are the most critical aspects of the film industry that you feel must change in the near future?” All the replies we received were extremely interesting, and despite the huge variety of issues cited they all had one thing in common: the need for independent cinema to find new strategies and a new approach in order to reach its audience. That’s why we decided to make the keynote theme of the various U30 sessions The Audience of the Future, in all its multiple perspectives: from theatrical distribution to marketing, from relations with content platforms to the role of film festivals and markets.”
The project is tied to this edition of the Festival, Locarno72, and is implemented with support from the Federal Office of Culture (FOC)/MEDIA Desk Suisse.
The 72nd Locarno Film Festival will take place from 7 to 17 August 2019.