The Festival of Three Continents is an annual film festival dedicated to the screening of films from Asia, Africa and Latin America. Alongside the festival, a co-production incubator workshop is held to support the development of emerging filmmakers from those regions. Produire au Sud began as a side event but has, in recent years, become central to the Festival’s identity. Each year since 2000, six to eight producer-director teams from Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America have been selected to develop their projects under the guidance of European cinema professionals. The teams participate in training sessions on the strategies and mechanisms of international coproduction, including sessions on scriptwriting, distribution, pitching, and postproduction. While other European programs tend to favour residences or market formats, the emphasis on education and training makes the Nantes program unique. Through a combination of individual and collective sessions, the teams are equipped with the skills to refine their projects and package them for the international market.
Produire au Sud is a place where all of the traditional stakes of the film world are at play, most notably the quest to establish the correct balance between affirming one’s artistic vision and conforming to the demands of the market – a tension which is perhaps even more pronounced in a cross-cultural context. Over the course of a week, participants negotiate these issues and are also encouraged to consider specific contemporary challenges, such as the impact of the digital revolution of the production-distribution-exhibition film chain and the power structures that shape globally-dispersed production. Beyond equipping participants with these specific industry-related skills, Produire au Sud is also a site of exchange. Intercultural dialogue between participants and experts from different continents and countries is a feature of the week, but ‘exchange’ is also to be understood in terms of the interaction between different aspects of the film industry, as well as in terms of inter-generational exchange, where young director-producer teams benefit from the experience of senior experts. The term « co-production », which is at the heart of Produire au Sud, thus assumes rich and varied meanings.
In an effort to better understand these exchanges and to build a productive dialogue between the production sector and the university sector, an innovative research initiative has been established. The Scholar in Residence programme, which was inaugurated in 2017, is a partnership between Produire au Sud/Festival of 3 Continents, the Centre for National Identities and Interculturality Studies (CRINI) at the University of Nantes and the Co-production Research Network (CoRN). Each year, an academic is invited to attend Produire au Sud and to observe and interview participants. Produire au Sud opens its door to academic investigation, as a means to reflect on its continually evolving practice and pedagogical approach. Academics will find in this experience a rich exploratory field, a rare level of access to insider’s knowledge and personal dialogues with films professionals. Issues at play at Produire au Sud are extremely diverse, from film industry and co-production issues, to questions of intercultural relations and storytelling. Accordingly, the Scholar in Residence program is open to academics from all fields, such as film and media studies, sociology, anthropology, geography and philosophy.
The aim in providing this unprecedented experience for researchers is three-fold:
- to facilitate and promote dialogue between stakeholders from different professional worlds – film industry practitioners and scholars – such that new insights might emerge with the potential to benefit both sectors;
- to shed light on the cultural, economic, political, and human issues that arise during the workshop in order to create a unique Produire au Sud knowledge bank and indeed to inform the design of future workshops;
- for the participants, it is an occasion to bear witness to their own experience – the complexities of co-producing with Europe – in order that their peers in their countries of origin may also benefit and learn from their experience and advice.
2018 Program Description
Each year via this website, applications are solicited from the scholarly community. Applicants from all disciplines, notably Film and Media Studies, Area Studies, Anthropology, Sociology, Business Studies, etc. are invited to present a research proposal of their own devising, which may touch upon a variety of topics including, but not limited to:
- The practice of international co-production
- Film support mechanisms
- New technologies and the evolution of the global film industry
- Cooperation between different film professions (director, producer, distributor, production and post-production personnel…)
- Global narratives and cross-cultural storytelling
- Intercultural working relations (business cultures, cross-cultural communications, language and translation)
- Training and education studies
Organisation of the Residency
The duration of the residency correlates to the duration of Produire au Sud workshop (which is slightly shorter than the Festival of Three Continents). Food and accommodation will be provided for the scholar for the duration of the residency. Transport to and from Nantes will be at the scholar’s own expense.
Research activities during Produire au Sud include attendance at collective sessions and some individual sessions, as well as individual interview time with the participants, subject to standard ethics clearance procedures.
The scholar will give at least one lecture at the Maison de la Recherche of the University of Nantes. The audience may consist of Produire au Sud participants, University of Nantes scholars, and invited guests from the Nantes Institute for Advanced Study Foundation (IEA).
Upon completion of the residency, the scholar will present two reports:
Confidential feedback on his/her experience for the Selection Committee (1,000-1,500 words within mutually agreed time-frame.
An essay using data gathered during his/her stay in Nantes (approx. 3,000 words). This essay will be made available on the Produire au Sud website, in order to create the Produire au Sud Knowledge Bank.
In response to the call for expressions of interest, candidates are to provide a 1,000-word research proposal, indicating how and why Produire au Sud would be a fruitful field of investigation. This should be accompanied by a full Curriculum Vitae. Applicants must be fluent in English as this is the working language of the workshop.
The Selection Committee is Chaired by the Executive Director of the Produire au Sud workshop and comprised of representatives from the Festival des Trois Continents, the University of Nantes and the Co-production Research Network (CoRN).
Scholar in Residence 2018
Dr Julia Hammett-Jamart of the Co-production Research Network has been named as the 2018 Scholar in Residence. She will be working in close partnership with Katell Leon (Secrétaire adjointe de l’association Les 3 Continents en charge de Produire au Sud / Doctorante en Etudes Cinématographiques à Université Rennes 2) from the Festival des Trois Continents to explore the impact upon the creative process of the industrial mechanisms associated with international co-production. Their research will have a particular focus upon cultural exchange – institutionalized asymmetries in power relations and how such obstacles are negotiated in the context of the creative process. Their shared aim is to generate a publication based upon the six case-studies from Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Mozambique, Nigeria and Columbia.
During her residency, Dr Hammett-Jamart will give a public lecture hosted by the Centre de Recherche sur les Identités, les Nations et l’Interculturalité (CRINI) at the Faculty of Languages, University of Nantes.
Julia Hammett-Jamart PhD is co-founder of the Co-production Research Network (CoRN). Her career spans film and television production, policy and research, in both the Australian and European contexts. She has produced and directed programs for public broadcaster SBS Television, occupied senior policy positions at the Australian Film Commission and Screen Australia, and held visiting fellowships at the Sorbonne Nouvelle (Université Paris III) and the British Institute in Paris (University of London). Julia holds a PhD in Social Sciences, Media and Communication, has consulted as a national expert for the European Audiovisual Observatory and is a regular guest lecturer at numerous European institutions, including Kings College London, the Institut National d’Histoire de l’Art in Paris and at the University of Copenhagen. Her most recent publications include a chapter on the relationship between screen policy, research and practice in Reconceptualising Film Policies (Routledge 2017) and a co-edited volume, European Film and Television Co-production: Policy and Practice (Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming).
Scholar in Residence 2017
Dr Ana Viñuela of the Université Paris III (La Sorbonne Nouvelle) was the inaugural scholar in residence for the first year of the program, in 2017.
During her residency, Dr Viñuela presented her research on co-production at a roundtable which was open to the public and held at the Natural History Museum.
The article she wrote drawing upon her research at Produire au Sud appears in a forthcoming volume European Film and Television Co-production: Policy and Practice (Palgrave Macmillan), which can be pre-ordered at this link: https://www.palgrave.com/br/book/9783319971568