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China a strong force at this year’s Cannes Film Festival

25 May 2015 - Freeway Entertainment

Freeway Entertainment Group executives were in Cannes this year (13-24 May) with Cecile Huberts, Martijn Meerstadt and Gadi Wilstrom leading the team and joined by team colleagues Zoltan Arvay (Managing Director, Freeway Spain), Rita Jardan (Senior Financial Account Manager), Eszter Sallai (Financial Account Manager), Lili Ballagó-Beck (Account Manager, Sales & Acquisitions) and Eva Makra (Senior Account Manager, International Distribution).


Freeway partners Cecile Huberts and Martijn Meerstadt with Andrew Mason at the inaugural Cannes China Summit 2015

Titles screening In Competition represented by Freeway Entertainment this year included Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Lobster which picked up the Jury prize, Todd Haynes’ Carol, for which Rooney Mara received the Best Actress award for her performance opposite Cate Blanchett, and Justin Kurzel’s long awaited Macbeth, which attracted critical acclaim for lead actors Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard.

In a festival that saw strong attendance from all major territories, much of the conversation on the Croisette turned to the effects of the currency crisis in Europe and Russia, with the Euro falling steadily against the dollar and the Ruble still not recovered after its fall last year. In contrast, the Chinese market grew a massive 36% in 2014, and its strength over other territories was marked by the Festival with the first-ever Cannes China Summit (16-19 May), which focused on key topics such as  theatrical and VOD distribution as well as international co-production.

Attending the summit were Freeway Partners Cecile Huberts, Martijn Meerstadt and Gadi Wilstrom. “The increasing global interest in China is clear to all internationals,” says Cecile,  “and you could sense that more deals were being done with Chinese markets in the Marché this year. The inaugural China Summit was an invaluable chance to make new connections and discuss business opportunities within this increasingly important territory."


The Marché du Film at Cannes Film Festival