Thessaloniki Film Festival presents the results of the Think Tank series on the future of film markets

Thessaloniki Film Festival presents the results of the Think Tank series on the future of film markets


Where did the COVID-19 pandemic leave the film markets? What are the needs that should be addressed now? How is the traditional model shifting? What would an economically, ecologically and socially sustainable future of Film Markets look like? Thessaloniki International Film Festival’s initiative, a series of Think Tanks  titled “Think Tank: Shaping the Film Markets of Tomorrow”, organized in partnership with the Cannes’ Marché du Film and Berlinale’s European Film Market and in collaboration with the consultancy agency The Catalysts, attempted to answer these very questions. 


Technological, economic and societal changes, such as health crisis, war, inflation, energy crisis, climate change, digitalization, audience shift, platforms thriving, AI, have affected film markets. Moreover the recent pandemic pushed every sector of the industry to adapt at a breakneck pace. The goal of the Think Tank series was to detect relevant topics of concern, discuss upcoming challenges, and encourage an open conversation and mutual support with other European

Film Markets.


More than 100 film professionals participated in the Think Tank series.The Film Markets that have participated in all or some of the three Think Tanks are the following: AGORA - Thessaloniki Film Festival and Thessaloniki Documentary Festival, Marché du Film - Cannes FF, European Film Market - Berlinale, Venice Production Bridge - Venice FF, KVIFF Eastern Promises, San Sebastian Industria, IFFR Pro, Locarno Pro, Les Arcs - Industry Village, Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event, Cinelink Industry Days - Sarajevo FF, When East Meets West - Trieste FF, MIFA - Annecy Animation FF, Visions du Réel Industry, CPH:DOX Industry, IDFA Markets, DOK Leipzig, Baltic Sea Docs, Sofia Meetings - Sofia FF, MIA Market, Göteborg Film Festival Industry, Connecting Cottbus - Cottbus FF, DOK. fest München Industry, Glasgow Film Festival Industry.


What was the discussion?



What is needed?


  1. To break the power structures, by redistributing the power. Film markets need to be more inclusive and offer access to valuable information and contacts. Film Markets are a place of nurturing and exchange, and participants stressed the importance of finding ways to give space and access for different stakeholders - specifically for the younger generation.
  2. To promote sustainability through practices that wouldn’t require the full digitization of film markets.


What were the key takeaways from the Think Tanks?



European Film Markets discussed a possible coalition between them with the aim to collaborate and exchange information, solutions and ideas. The goal would be to meet twice per year and put forward solutions. If the exact format of this coalition has not yet been decided, setting up coordination and a common representation seems more than urgent.


The markets are already forming dynamic networks of cooperation according to their needs for sustainability and growth. These co-operations are flexible and evolve very quickly according to the needs of the industry. Therefore, it is important to protect their dynamism, flexibility, diversity and resilience.


The initiative for the Think Tank series was announced in November 2022, during the 63rd Thessaloniki International Film Festival. The first Think Tank took place in February 2023, during Berlinale’s EFM and had the title “Weaving the Market Fabric”. The second Think Tank took place in Thessaloniki, during the 25th Thessaloniki International Documentary Festival and was titled “Modelling the Market Place”. The series culminated and concluded at Cannes with the third Think Tank, “Financing the Market Place”, which took place at Marché du Film, while the final results were, also, presented at Cannes.


Read the full report: Think Tank: Shaping the Film Markets of Tomorrow