"At the [Cannes] festival, which ends on Sunday, Me and Orson Welles, a production starring Zac Efron filmed in the Isle of Man last year, will be screened."
LOL I think I wish I could go to this screening more than the SXSW or Woodstock screenings for some reason.
And maybe Zac will stop by for some MAOW promo on his way home. I would, if I were him. :D
Taxpayers' £50k bill for Cannes Film Festival superyacht
TAXPAYERS have spent more than £50,000 paying for two Isle of Man Film representatives to promote Manx films at the Cannes Film Festival, currently taking place in the south of France.
Along with Steve Christian, chairman of the Isle of Man Film investment arm CinemaNX (NX), they will spend up to a week on board superyacht My Issue, which has cost just under £107,000 to hire.
A spokesman for the Department of Trade and Industry said the taxpayer had paid half the hire cost and NX the other half.
Hilary Dugdale of the DTI's Isle of Man Film – who was joined for three days in Cannes by another civil servant – has been in Cannes since the start of the festival last Wednesday (May 13).
She said: 'The whole of the film production industry is going through a difficult time so it's important we have a really active presence.'
The 114ft-long, triple-decker yacht, features a master cabin, two double staterooms and two twin staterooms as well as a sundeck with a hot tub.
She said the level of taxpayers' money spent on the trip was appropriate, saying: 'There's an image we have to portray. If we didn't, we would lose momentum in terms of securing films we get into production.'
At the festival, which ends on Sunday, Me and Orson Welles, a production starring Zac Efron filmed in the Isle of Man last year, will be screened.
Three films will also be promoted to distributors – Heartless, directed by Philip Radley, and Wild Target, a hitman caper starring Bill Nighy and Helena Bonham Carter – which were both filmed last year.
They have also taken thriller Disappearance of Alice Creed, which is currently in post-production after being filmed at the start of this year.
Ms Dugdale said: 'It's a much smaller group than usual, however it's essential we are here. It's the only major marketing opportunity we get involved in.
'It's the biggest event in the calendar so it's essential we are here if we want to be considered as a serious investor and a co-producer of feature films.'
DTI chief executive Chris Corlett said hiring a yacht was both a 'prestigious and cost effective venue'.
'Cannes is a very expensive place and it's a very cost effective way to promote the Island and our film capabilities,' he said.
He said that otherwise they would need 'several bedrooms, several meeting rooms to meet with business leaders and function rooms to entertain guests'.
He said it was 'impossible' to say how much revenue had been secured from previous appearances at the film festival but said Isle of Man Film had 'generated many millions of pounds' as well as positive publicity for the Island.
'It's a very prestigious event and it has been crucial in establishing and maintaining links with film producers and distributors and helped cement our position as a leading independent film financier in the British Isles and therefore Europe,' he explained.
The number of productions made in the Island has fallen during the last couple of years – there were nine films made in 2005 compared with three in 2007 and four last year.
So far this year, two films have been made – the Disappearance of Alice Creed and animation film Rico and Chita.
CinemaNX was appointed in 2007 to manage the Island's media development fund.
Headed by Mr Christian, NX provides film and television producers with a combination of production expertise and experience of international film financing and oversees the entire physical production process.
ETA: I should say, this is not a screening associated directly with the festival... it is probably being screened only for prospective buyers. It is a good time to do so because a lot of buyers will be in Cannes. Unless Zac shows up to schmooze the buyers, it probably will not get more press than the article above.