International Report From the Field with Cynthia Kane

Posted on April 3, 2009

It’s Cynthia Kane once again reporting in from Cannes in the South of France. No, not from the renowned film festival, but from one of the two huge television markets held twice a year in the springtime––MIPDOC and MIPTV. MIPDOC takes place on the weekend; however, this year I did not attend since Kathryn Washington, ITVS programming manager, and I were in New York for the Native American Film Festival and Filmmaker Summit (see my post from earlier this week). 

Thus, I arrived Sunday night in the pouring rain. No sunny South of France for this trip! The Palais de Festival, where MIPTV is held, was far less full this year. Our booth, which we normally share with WNET-Thirteen (PBS in New York City) and WLIW (PBS in Long Island, New York) was a bit quieter. 

Our colleagues from WNET decided not to attend and there were other open spaces normally filled with booths and activity. Yet, many of us agreed, it gave us more time for thorough meetings, instead of the usual frenetic rush of this market and a lot of business was accomplished. I thought it might be slow for me, but my schedule was jam-packed. It’s a time of catching up, scouting, even meeting some of the producers and filmmakers that submitted to International Call. 

I was able to discuss the projects and give feedback, which Joy-Marie Scott, ITVS International Programming Coordinator, and I usually do via phone appointment or Skype. It’s a rare luxury to do the feedback face-to-face and I certainly took full advantage of it while here. Both Philippa Kowarsky of Cinephil-Israel and Leila Monks of TVF-UK had fantastic birthday dinners during the week. I missed both! The former due to the late arrival of my flight, the latter due to sheer exhaustion of the busy week. The business day, you see, doesn’t stop until you’ve had a meal and some fantastic French wine and talked with your colleagues late into the night. Then it’s back to the hotel to grab some sleep before the next early meeting that morning! All in all, this has been a great MIPTV, despite attendance down by 4,000 and the cold, rainy weather. 

-Cynthia, ITVS International Programming Manager

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