The Slovak Film Commission (SFC) is preparing for the 75th Cannes IFF (16-27 May 2023) and the associated Marché du Film market.

The Slovak Film Commission (SFC) Manager Zuzana Bielikova and the Director of the Audiovisual Fund (AVF) Peter Badač will be present together with a delegation from the Slovak Film Institute, the Czech Film Centre and the Czech Film Commission at the Czech & Slovak Pavilion (N°136, Village International).

The aim will be to inform visitors about the current state of Slovak film production, support for the audiovisual industry and the 33% cash rebate on expenses spent on film or TV production in the Slovak Republic.

Zuzana Bielikova will also be attending activities related to her membership in EUFCN / European Film Commissions Network (where she is also a board member), EFAD / European Film Agency Directors association and BPX.

Her participation at the Cannes Film Festival follows a previous business trip to Los Angeles, where the AFCI week conference, organised by the Association of Film Commissioners International, took place in March. It was attended by representatives of more than one hundred and thirty film agencies representing all continents and 60 speakers. Among the participants was also the manager of the Slovak Film Agency (SFA) Zuzana Bieliková.

In addition to the AFCI week conference, Zuzana Bieliková actively participated in the official opening of the Honorary Consulate of the Slovak Republic in Los Angeles on March 23, 2023 where she gave a welcome speech and showcased foreign projects that were filmed in Slovakia.


Founded in 1975, the Association of Film Commissioners International  (AFCI) is the professional organization for film agency representatives worldwide. It brings together and represents more than 300 members of city, county, state, regional and national film agencies. Shortly after its founding in June 2018, the Slovak Film Agency (SFA) became a member of AFCI, which hosts the annual AFCI Week conference in Los Angeles The agenda for this year's conference was to train film agency representatives and introduce new trends in the film industry. The program of the event was divided into 4 days and was open exclusively to AFCI members.

All of the panels addressed current challenges facing the film industry, with some of the most dynamic panels focusing on the professional development of executives and other initiatives aimed at educating film professionals.

A particularly interesting panel was a case study of the production of The Last of Us, during which panelists Joe Roewe (HBO), Katie Hayes (WB, Discovery) and Luke Azevedo (Calgary Film Commission) portrayed how a film studio, a film agency and a location manager worked together to transform the Calgary region into a production location for this popular television series.

The conference also provided a forum for discussion on the future of streaming, during which panelists debated what is currently driving the audiovisual industry: is it technology, financial incentives, infrastructure, or a combination of these factors? How long will the current demand for content continue? When will the need for infrastructure and skilled film crews be saturated - if ever? What are the prospects for virtual studios, new forms of distribution, and the creation of new production facilities around the world? Panelists answering questions on the changing face of film and TV production were Eric Mika of Film Verdict, Carol Trussel of Apple TV, Jason Hariton of The MBS Group, and Tim Clawson of Amazon.


The conference also underlined the theme of sustainability, specifically through a panel on updates in the field of green filmmaking, where Marijana Stoisic from the Vienna Film Commission also described the support scheme, but new developments in this area were also described by Heidi Kindberg from HBO and Susan Sanchez from Amazon.

Virtual production was also a hot topic, during the discussion the panelists tried to define what the future of virtual production is. The panel was moderated by Variety Co-Editor-in-Chief Cynthia Littleton and featured speakers Adrian Offard - CEO, Video Screen Services, Ltd, Jeffrey P. Soderberg - Executive Vice President of Production and Innovation, MBS Group and Christina Sours, Virtual Production Producer. Conference attendees also visited Orbital Studios' film studios focused on virtual production.

Important panels included one on gender and racial diversity and inclusion in the film industry, a panel on the work of location managers from LMGI, a panel on the positives and negatives of financial incentives, and a panel on the use of AI in the film industry.

The programme also included a 'Power Brunch' - an event designed to enable meaningful networking and networking. During this event, AFCI members had the opportunity to make direct connections with physical production managers from film studios, mini-majors, OTT companies and major production companies. This program was attended by representatives from approximately 40 major companies including 20th Century Fox, Walt Disney Studio, Netflix, HBO/Warner, Apple, Fox Searchlight, Paramount, Annapurna, Harvest Film, Prettybird, Smuggler, Gaumont USA, Walden Media and others.

In addition to her active participation in the conference, Zuzana Bieloková held personal meetings with representatives of Hollywood studios and independent producers. She also met with providers of streaming content and audiovisual services such as Netflix or Amazon, who traditionally produce their own films and series in Europe. Working discussions were also held with representatives of Lionsgate, Searchlight, Paramount TV, HBO/Warner Bros Pictures, NBCUniversal. They presented their projects that could potentially be filmed in Slovakia in the future.

Date: 05.05.2023