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DISCOP Johannesburg 2017 presents The Next-Gen Programme
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Fri, 09 Jun 2017 10:57

The sixth edition of DISCOP Johannesburg will be hosting South Africa’s next generation of film and TV creators, producers and dealmakers. This year’s events will take place from 25 to 27 October 2017 at the Sandton Convention Centre.

New additions to DISCOP Johannesburg include a sidebar initiative dubbed, The Next Gen Programme.
"The programme aims to guide and nurture the next wave of South Africa’s talented producers and provide them with expert guidance and top-level industry networking opportunities to develop content and monetise entertainment content,” explains Patrick Zuchowicki, founding manager of the DISCOP markets.

Developed with key industry associations; this thorough, intensive, and real-world programme will specifically focus on animated content, multi-platform short formats, Virtual Reality production and partnership opportunities with Germany.

A new partnership with the African Animation Network (AAN) was also announced and will ensure that up and coming animators are able to take part in the continent’s only pan-African animation pitching competition planned with the support of Animation, Visual effects, Gaming, and Comics associations (AVGC).

Nick Wilson, project manager of AAN explains it further: "True to the AAN’s mandate, we provide AVGC associations across Africa with an open network and platform to market themselves at the DISCOP Abidjan and Johannesburg markets, the world’s premiere destinations for content made in Africa. We’re excited to explore the diversity of the African animation industry with the possibility of creating co-production and collaboration opportunities across borders and regions whilst simultaneously building capacity within the sector."

The development, production, and monetisation of short formats tailored to reach audiences via varied digital distribution streams will take centre stage. A pitching competition sponsored by mahala.tv – a new distribution and funding platform and filmmaker community - will see a concerted outreach to independents, especially those creating short formats.

mahala.tv CEO and director, Gerhard Mostert has this to say about the partnership: “To celebrate the launch of mahala.tv, and to promote the importance of short formats within the digital space, mahala.tv has partnered with DISCOP Johannesburg to put out a call for short format content that will be showcased at the 3-day industry gathering. mahala.tv is especially excited to be hosting the pitching competition and will be offering funding support to winners, as well as welcoming all independents to become part of a new global community of producers that will enable them to create, share, and monetise content.”

DISCOP Johannesburg’s Next Gen Program will also focus on the increasing potential of Virtual Reality, with the global augmented reality and VR markets expected to generate US$ 80 billion in revenues by 2020. Major broadcasters such as Arte, France Television, National Geographic, Discovery, ZDF, Sky, BBC, ABC and NBC are already searching for VR content.
As part of the programme, producers can attend a series of master classes, talks, and round-table discussions with leading VR producers who will share their forecast and their vision on what role Africa can play in the VR industry. A VR cinema hosted by INVR.SPACE will also allow participants to immerse themselves in Virtual Reality content.

Sφnke Kirchhof, CEO of the German VR studio, INVR.SPACE is pleased to host and curate the VR cinema at DISCOP Johannesburg. "We are more than happy that our partner DISCOP Johannesburg is featuring Virtual Reality as a serious and promising topic and invited us to present a selection of the latest and most impressive cinematic VR content. We believe that VR can expand the limits of storytelling and can offer a new approach to cinematic experiences. As content from African continent and filmmakers is still rare, we are especially excited to host this VR cinema in South Africa and participate in a dialogue between German and African producers," shares Kirchhof.

The Next Gen Programme will further highlight how producers can use the South Africa - Germany film and television co-production treaties to their advantage; and how their cross-border co-operation incentives can deliver feature films, TV series, and documentaries that work around the world and would otherwise be impossible to finance.

"When it comes to setting up international partnership, South Africa has an obvious advantage and offers one of the most effective co-production treaties. The National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) is pleased to once again partner with DISCOP Johannesburg, in our efforts to increase relations between South Africa and Germany and enable the development and promotion of a transformed and thriving audio-visual industry in both countries,” explains Peter Kwele, the NFVF head of marketing and communications.

Over 1 500 delegates representing multi-platform entertainment content businesses from across Africa and the globe will converge in Johannesburg for the 3-day affair. Participants come from over 70 countries and include distributors, acquisition and development executives, producers, and financiers.

Confirmed exhibitors for this year’s event include: Fox, NBC Universal, BBC, ZEE Entertainment, CBS, Viacom, Lionsgate, Dreamworks, Televisa, Indiacast, Kanal D, Turner, TV5 MONDE, Deutsche Welle, NHK, CCTV, SkyVision, Telemundo, TV Azteca, ZDF, Paramount, Mondo TV, Global Agency and other leading film and television companies.

Over the years DISCOP Johannesburg has established itself as a pivotal destination for independent creators and producers seeking knowledge-transfer, funding, partnerships and distribution opportunities.



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