Film und Medien Stiftung NRWNewsNewsFirst International Distribution Summit: distribution sector meets in Cologne

First International Distribution Summit: distribution sector meets in Cologne

  • Conference on strategies and concepts for innovative distribution practices
  • October 19-20 at the Filmpalast cinema in Cologne
  • In cooperation with the European Work in Progress (EWIP) market platform

The Filmstiftung-backed International Distribution Summit (IDS) will be held in Cologne on October 19 – 20 as the first global platform for international distributors. AG Verleih has devised a new conference with a programme of keynotes, master classes and panels for an exchange of ideas and to provide impetus for strategies and concepts for innovative distribution practices and new business models. The evening of the conference’s first day will see the most innovative distribution strategy being honoured with the International Distribution Award. The laudatory speech will be given by the Berlinale’s managing director Mariette Rissenbeek.

Petra Müller, CEO of the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW: "We are delighted that the International Distribution Summit is highlighting the distribution sector and has invited international experts to be in Cologne for the event. It’s  particularly important in the present situation to face up to the challenges of the industry and explore new avenues. We are eagerly awaiting the exchange of ideas and experiences!"

Torsten Frehse, board member of AG Verleih: "It was a totally logical step for AG Verleih to have the new International Distribution Summit take place in Cologne since we have been successful in establishing the European Work in Progress here as an industry event over the past few years with the help of the Film- und Medienstiftung  and can now make the best possible  use of its structures, international reputation and networks to notch up another success with IDS."

High-profile keynotes and panels

Prominent international distributors and sales agents are being lined up to present their recipes for success and discuss case studies. They include Elissa Federoff from the cult distributor Neon (USA), Lucy Savage of London’s Studio Soho, Ben Johnson of the media tech company Gruvi (UK), Thomas Hosmann from the Dutch film platform Cineville, Yannick Bossenmeyer of Cascade8 (France) and Enrique Costa from the production and distribution company Elastica Films (ESP). The focus here will be on concepts for retaining audiences,  distribution strategies for independent distributors, repositioning the cinema experience, and such issues as branding, working with target groups, the development of subscription models for selling cinema tickets, the establishment of pre-sales in the cinema ticket sector as well as developing new online and social media strategies.

IDS will be held in cooperation with the European Work in Progress (EWIP)  market platform ahead of the Film Festival Cologne (October 21-27) and is supported by the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, BKM and Neustart Kultur.

Further information at

Warm-Up Panels in cooperation with EWIP
EWIP and IDS will joining forces to organise a panel on October 18 with Claudia Steffen (Pandora Filmproduktion), Björn Hoffmann (Pandora Filmverleih), Eduardo Viétez (Creast, Spain) and Birgit Heidsiek (Green Film Shooting) discussing "Green Production – Green Distribution". This will be followed by panels and best practice projects about distribution and marketing strategies for European arthouse cinema.

5th European Work in Progress Cologne (EWIP)
The "European Work in Progress Cologne" (EWIP) market platform has firmly established itself as a format and is now being held for the fifth time. This year, 28 selected feature films, documentaries and animated films will be presented to international distributors, sales agents, producers, festivals as well as financiers. The international jury will award prizes worth around 60,000 Euros for the best pitches. EWIP is organised in cooperation with the German Association of Independent Film Distributors (AG Verleih) and has been supported from the very beginning by the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW. EWIP will take place at the Cinenova cinema from  October 17-19 .