This article originally appeared in
October 23, 2007
Veneto buyer buzz builds on Biz


ROME -- The RomaCinemaFest's Business Street market event closed with
a last-minute flurry of activity Sunday, a day before the festival released final
figures that showed attendance almost 50% higher than during the
inaugural edition last year.

According to Business Street director Sylvain Auzou, the four-day twist on a
traditional market attracted 230 buyers this year, compared with 160 a year
ago. Interest and the level of activity rose in step with the increase in

"I think we can say that this year was a success," Auzou said in an interview.
"I have tried to make the Business Street something small and accessible. I
think my problem next year may be dealing with the extra interest this year's
event is creating."

The Business Street differs from a traditional market in that it does not
include stands or scheduled events, but rather a low-key and intimate place
for buyers and sellers to discuss potential deals. The event is housed in a
series of hotels along Rome's famous Via Veneto.

In its two years of existence, the event has made strides in finding a niche in
its spot on the calendar between Toronto in September and the upcoming
American Film Market in Los Angeles, which starts at the end of the month.

The early reviews from participants in Rome were overwhelmingly positive.

"They spent a lot of money here and it shows," one Italy-based buyer said.
"Not in a pretentious way, but in that whatever you need and whoever you
want to talk to, they are here. I look at this event as a great pre-AFM
co-production hangout."

Brigitte Suarez, sales manager for Germany's the Match Factory, which this
year will skip AFM in lieu of the Rome event, agreed.

"Other markets have rigid schedules that can be both positive and negative,"
Suarez said. "Here, it's much more relaxed. If you want to discuss something
with someone, just walk up to them and start talking."

It is difficult to evaluate the success of an event like the Business Street.
Some deals closed in Rome were hatched in Locarno, Venice or Toronto,
and many first brought up in Rome might not be closed until AFM or
afterward. But participants talked about dozens of deals in some stage of
development, and the rooftop terrace of the Bristol Hotel at the mouth of Via
Veneto was buzzing with activity as the event wound down, despite
threatening skies and cool weather.

"Interest was good last year, but a good sign this year is that everyone who
came in 2006 came back in 2007 and there are many new faces as well,"
Auzou said.

Jean-Thomas Bernardini from Brazil's Imovision said the Business Street is
one of the few market events he attends.

"I get invited to markets all over the world, but Brazil is so far away and I am
uninterested in living out of a suitcase, and so I turn most invitations down,"
Bernardini said. "But this is one of the events I look forward to because it's in
a great place and I can get a lot done."
(c) 2007 The Hollywood Reporter
All rights reserved.
Volume 77; Number 9
Volume 77; Number 9
October 28, 2007
RomaCinemaFest ends
strong; Popular 'Juno' wins
Best Film

October 27, 2007
'Juno' takes home top prize
at RomaCinemaFest

'Canvas,' 'Pride' earn Rome
fest's Alice nods

October 26, 2007
Top prize still up for grabs at
Rome fest

October 25, 2007
'Haifa' earns New Cinema's
Italian nod

October 24, 2007
'Lambs' stars in like lions at
Rome fest

FilmItalia, UniFrance team
for young talent

October 23, 2007
Veneto buyer buzz builds on
Biz Street

Star wattage waning at
Rome fest

October 22, 2007
Coppola lights up Rome fest

October 20, 2007
Depardieu imposter fools
hotel staff in Rome

'Elizabeth,' Loren big draws
at Rome festival

'Elijah' first production at
new I am Third

October 19, 2007
RomaCinemaFest gets
Second Wind

Fellini script 'Viaggio' on
new voyage

October 18, 2007
Rome Fest dressed up in
second outing

Rome Fest dressed up in
second outing

October 12, 2007
RomaCinemaFest sets
sophomore bar higher

Fest success good news for
the last paparazzo

Film spotlight: "Youth
Without Youth"

Italy offers versatile
location, strong incentives

'Business Street' initiative a
high-end venue

RomaCinemaFest owes debt
to Auditorium

September 28, 2007
Rome Fest's love affair with
Hollywood continues