Cannes market overwhelmed with films this year, perhaps too many say some

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A ‘deluge’ of films has made the Cannes marketplace process tricky for both buyers and sellers, it seems. 

A really good round-up piece has emerged over at Screen Daily that summarises lots of the notable acquisitions that have taken place at the Cannes film market. The common theme though, seems to be that there was just too many films for sale, with sellers struggling to stand out from one another amidst the hurly-burly and buyers being faced with an excess of choice.

Studio executives interviewed for the piece have offered a few different reasons as to why the Cannes marketplace felt so bloated this year. The onset of the writers’ strike in the US is one possible cause, with lots of written projects being squeezed in to meet the WGA-mandated ‘downing of tools’, whilst others suggest that some projects simply elected to skip the European Film Market and American Film Market in favour of Cannes.

A third (and interesting) proposition put forward is that lots of writers who have been sucked into the less creatively-free sector of television for years now have all suddenly decided to script indie film projects as a ‘sharp creative refresh’ process.

It’s probably a combination of those factors and more, but the net result is that buyers felt ‘overwhelmed’ and that many haven’t yet had a chance to read many of the scripts they were looking to check out.

This may be a good time to humbly suggest that next time, some sellers might wish to ‘keep their powder dry’ and wait for the ‘Cannes of the West Midlands’ as Birmingham Film Market is coming up in October and alongside hosting some of the industry’s bigger players, is one of the few film marketplaces that offers guidance to those who haven’t yet found representation for their projects.

If Cannes continues to become more overcrowded, you can expect business to spill into other marketplaces on the calendar, whilst it’s also looking likely that post-festival deals will be struck for weeks, even months to come following the conclusion of Cannes. We’ll bring you news on any of the bigger deals as we hear them, but our favourites from this year are still Todd Haynes’ May December and of course, Nicolas Cage in The Surfer. 

Image: BigStock


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