Locarno Festival: Open Doors in Pakistan

Press release, 15.01.2018

Sophie Bourdon, the Head of Open Doors section of the Locarno Festival, is visiting Pakistan to present various activities open to Pakistani filmmakers and producers in 2018 on the occasion of the International Film Festival. From 14th to 23rd January, 2018 in Pakistan, she will run the discussions and answer all possible questions by Pakistani professionals during sessions planned in Karachi, Islamabad and Peshawar.

Sophie Bourdon, Head of Open Doors, Locarno Festival
Sophie Bourdon, Head of Open Doors, Locarno Festival © Locarno Festival

These events will take place in close cooperation with the Embassy of Switzerland in Pakistan / Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). Supported since its inception by the SDC, the Open Doors initiative aims to highlight and support filmmakers and films from the South and the East where independent cinema is vulnerable. Open Doors focuses its program for three years (2016-2018) on a single region, South Asia (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka), in order to increase and further enhance opportunities for collaboration and exchange for local professionals.

The Open Doors program will happen on 1 – 11 August, 2018 in Locarno (Switzerland) as part of the 71st edition of the Locarno Festival and will have three dimensions: the Open Doors Hub, Lab and Screenings.

Each year up to 8 projects from South Asian countries will be chosen to participate in the co-production platform Open Doors Hub (1 – 8 August 2018). The projects’ producers and directors will be able to meet potential co-producers, film funders, sales agents and distributors to foster international collaborations for their films. The program alternates pitching coaching, group discussions, one-to-one meetings and networking activities with industry decision makers and festival guests. At the end of the sessions, the Open Doors Jury will award the Open Doors Prize to a few of these projects.

Open Doors Lab (1 – 8 August 2018) will gather a few promising emerging producers/filmmakers-producers from the region. This incubating lab, focusing on the role of the creative producer, will provide the participants with tools to best approach the project development stage and to work with international film professionals, while increasing their entrepreneurial skills.

The non-competitive and curated section Open Doors Screenings (1 – 11 August 2018) will present feature-length and short films from South Asia to the general audience during the Locarno Festival.