Russia has been in the news very often over the last year and not in the most positive light. In times of stark negative press, a country’s creative talents and products can easily be overlooked. The Russian film industry is experiencing a sort of renaissance. Every year, Russian films such as Loveless, The Man Who Surprised Everyone, Sobibor and Summer go to the most prestigious film festivals and awards. John Malkovich, Jackie Chan, Christopher Lambert, Lars Eidinger, Ralph Fiennes have all starred in Russian movies in the last few years.
Funding of Russian film and co-productions are increasing, local films are beating box office records and talent is breaking out to film in Europe.
These rather positive trends have occurred in conjunction with a number of developments in the Russian Film Industry:
Establishment of Film Commissions
Moscow, Kaliningrad, Samara, Novgorod, Irkutsk and others. Since its inception, the Moscow Film Commission only has helped over 145 productions in shoot in Moscow and in the Moscow region.
Made in Russia / Russian Export Centre
Russian Export Centre supports the promotion of Russian films abroad. They also have instruments to support the co-production projects financially.
The cheap Rouble
As the Russian rouble has depreciated by a factor of 2 in the last four years, it is now much more economically viable to shoot in Russia.
As the film industry in Russia develops, one can also see the emergence of film studios eager to break out internationally. Here is a list of the most ambitious:
- Rock Studio
- Art Pictures
Anyone be interested in seeing Russian film, asking questions and finding out about true Russian creative talent should visit the biggest Russian film event in the English speaking world. The 3rd Russian Film Week held 25th November to 2nd December across the UK, brings together 150+ filmmakers, 50 films, exhibitions and masterclasses.
Filmmakers interested in Russia as a filming destination, distribution territory or want to explore co-production opportunities can visit the RFW Industry forum at the BFI on the 28th November where top decision makers and industry representatives will convene.