20th March 2023 – Lille – At the Series Mania Festival, CEPI organized and moderated a panel on the importance of European IP.
Global players have a growing presence in Europe and have brought new business practices, such as service productions, commissioning and long term exploitation rights. In parallel the European Directive, the AVMS, encourages streamers to invest in European production. Many countries have already implemented financial obligations to that effect and require direct investment.
As a consequence, streamers investment has contributed, and continues to contribute substantially to the development of European stories, written by European authors, produced by European producers and for a European audience. However, the intellectual property of these European stories are in the hands of non- European actors.
4 producers, Nora Melhi (Alef One - France), Mary Callery (ShinAwil - Ireland), Alice Willisson (Rhapsody Films - Australia) and Mariela Besuiewsky (Tournasol Media – Spain) shared their experience and the challenges they face when developing projects and looking for partners while keeping the intellectual property of the work. The impact of these practices on European cultural sovereignty was shared by all, including from an Australian perspective, as the country is also undergoing a reflection on what is an Australian work. Jérémie Kessler (Director of European and international affairs at CNC) also part of the panel, provided insights on how changes to EU legislation could help European work retain their IP in Europe, and confirmed the development of a market of IP in international festivals. Separate but highly intertwined, the issue of IP staying with the independent producers has also been discussed, reminding the audience of the role of the independent producers in taking risks, developing new talents and projects, and overall bearing the risks for the diversity of productions.
Speakers agreed that the issue of European IP is a complicated one, but nonetheless a very important one which needs to be addressed.