Post-L.A. Studio Screenings At NBI Are Now Aiding Indies.

Position::NATPE Budapest Review

A number of large U.S. studios held their post-Los Angeles new season screenings at what is now known as NATPE Budapest International (or NBI), the newest in a long line of name changes for a market that started out as DISCOP in 1991.

Later on, the U.S. studios took their new season screenings to other parts of Europe, with VideoAge attending the Fox event in Rome, Italy, after attending the screenings of CBSSI, Warner Bros., and NBCUniversal in Budapest.

Unusual this year were the cool temperatures found in Budapest, and the fact that Twentieth Century Fox TV held its screenings on June 28th, the last day of the four-day market. (Last year, Fox held its screenings on June 20, the market's second day.) As for the other U.S. studios, Warner Bros, screened on Monday, the 25th, CBSSI on the morning of the 26th, and NBCUni that same afternoon.

CBSSI offered breakfast and NBCUni took care of lunch, both at the same theater: the Puskin Mozi, a 250-seat cinema with bar and restaurant facilities, located just a 15-minute walk from the Intercontinental Hotel, NBI's headquarters. Warner Bros, held its event there, as well, a day earlier. Fox used a different facility, the Danube Palace, which is just a five-minute walk from the Intercontinental. After the third day, the 80 or so buyers attending each event resembled a caravan, greeting each other daily at various breakfast and lunch breaks.

All the U.S. studios exhibited at NBI, including Sony Pictures TV, Viacom/Paramount, and MGM. In total, there were 154 exhibiting companies, of which 27 were from the U.S., 25 were from the U.K., 13 were from France, a surprising 11 hailed from Canada, and 10 were from Germany. Among the exhibiting indies were eOne Entertainment, Kew Media, Lionsgate, A+E, and Banijay. As usual, all the major Turkish distribution companies were exhibiting, as were the larger Italian, Japanese, and South Korean content sellers.

Warner Bros, screened before NBI's exhibition floor officially opened, bringing buyers to the market earlier than usual, while Fox's last-day screenings convinced many buyers to stay in town longer than they customarily would, which also benefited indie distributors.

This year, it seemed as though the entire NBI conference schedule--which included a number of events at the tail-end of the market, including the main party--was deliberately geared towards extending the stays of both buyers and sellers.

As mentioned above, after NATPE Budapest, all the U.S...

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