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FILMART 2008 Attracts Record Number of Buyers
International Players High on Hong Kong Film and TV Industry

26 March 2008 - Nearly 4,200 industry professionals - a record number - attended the 12th Hong Kong International Film and TV Market (FILMART) last week.

More than 60 events, including seminars, press conferences, cocktail receptions and premieres, were held during the four-day fair (17-20 March).

Visitors from outside Hong Kong this year grew by 7.4 per cent, to 2,079, about 50 per cent of the total. The top 10 countries and regions bringing buyers to FILMART were: the Chinese mainland, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, the United States, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore and France. Buyers from Taiwan, South Korea and Thailand enjoyed double-digit growth. New FILMART buyers came from Cambodia, Columbia, Croatia, the Kiribati Republic and Myanmar.

International seminars and conferences focusing on the film and TV industry in Asia were a FILMART highlight this year. Renowned industry players shared their insights on a variety of timely issues, including digital distribution, Asian co-productions, the Guangdong film market under CEPA, and film merchandising. These included: Wellington Fung, Secretary-General of the Hong Kong Film Development Council; Douglas E Glen, CEO of Imagi International Holding Ltd; In-Ah Lee, Producer of Greenskyfilms, South Korea; Feng Li, President and CEO of Net Movies, China; Bey Logan, Vice President of the Weinstein Co, US; Buddy Marini, Managing Director of Avex Asia, Japan; Jonathan Olsberg, Chairman of Olsberg/SPI, UK; Tom Yoda, Chairman of TIFFCOM, Japan and some other top industry representatives.

Prospects for the film and entertainment industry are bright, according to an onsite, independent survey of exhibitors and buyers attending FILMART and the Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum, which was held at the same time as FILMART. Among the 338 respondents who took part in the survey, more than 60 per cent regarded FILMART as the most important film market in Asia. Nearly 80 per cent agreed that Hong Kong is a major Asian content production, distribution, trading and film financing centre.

Matthew O'Connor, a representative of Canada's Reunion Pictures, was impressed by FILMART: "There is a lot of excitement, a lot of anticipation, and a lot of money coming from other parts of the world to the fair."

Richard Yelen, Vice President and Managing Director of Kylin TV, the largest provider of Chinese channels and video-on-demand content in the US, appreciated how easy it was to speak with international TV representatives. "We had many successful conversations at FILMART."

Datin Rusila Hashim, Director of Quantum - ED Sdn Bhd of Malaysia, found the programming she needed from a Japanese exhibitor at FILMART. She was also happy to see the variety of documentaries and feature programmes with an Asian flavour at the fair. "My prime target now is to bring Asian film and TV products to the Middle East, and I find Hong Kong has everything for me."

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About the TDC
Established in 1966, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (TDC) is the international marketing arm for Hong Kong-based traders, manufacturers and service providers. With more than 40 offices worldwide, including 11 in the Chinese mainland, the TDC promotes Hong Kong as a platform for doing business with China and Asia. The TDC also organises trade fairs and business missions to connect companies with opportunities in Hong Kong and the mainland, while providing information via trade publications, research reports and online. For more information, visit www.tdctrade.com

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