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Fantastic Pavilion, the genre hub launched last year in Cannes, saunters back to the Croisette for its second edition, returning with a host of activities that include the Fantastic Galas, cocktails, and a showcase of genre video games as well as the second edition of the Fantastic Latido Award.

Welcomed by the Marché du Film as part of its ecosystem, the Fantastic Pavilion will pay tribute to this year’s country of honor with a cocktail celebration alongside the Neuchâtel International Fantastic Film Festival (NIFF) as well as a spotlight on Swiss films and Switzerland as a filming location in The Fantastic Pavilion Rue Morgue special edition magazine. 

“The Pavilion makes its return to the Croisette, thanks to the overwhelming response by the community who has embraced the Pavilion in ways we couldn’t be more thankful for, their clamor was heard and we’ve answered. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Community is key,” said Pablo Guisa Koestinger, Fantastic Pavilion executive director and founder-CEO of the Morbido Group.

Guillaume Esmiol, Cannes Marché du Film executive director, concurred: “They had a really great debut last year, injecting a dynamic energy and vibrant spirit into the Palais and offering a wide range of activities for the genre film community to gather and connect.”

“Genre and fantastic films have always played a crucial role in the numerous deals brokered in Cannes, and we are extremely proud to extend our support to them. Now that the Fantastic Pavilion has become an integral part of our Marché, we are very much looking forward to their innovative contributions to this year’s market edition,” he added.

The inaugural edition of the Fantastic Pavilion attracted more than 2,300 visitors over eight days, according to its organizers. Among them were 28 film festivals, 13 production companies and 11 sales agents/distributors who made the pavilion their primary base for conducting business.

While for some, the Fantastic Pavilion was a venue to hang out and socialize, for others, like Monica Lozano of Mexico’s Alebrije Cine, it was a chance to present her sci fi romantic drama “Sign Here” to international buyers. It was one of the films with Gala Presentations last year. “We were able to start talks with potential international buyers,” said Lozano, who lauded the Pavilion as a great networking space.

Aside from the Fantastic Galas that took place, sales agents organized special market screenings with the presence of cast and crew in some cases.

The Pavilion will be announcing the six films selected for Gala Presentations later in May. These are open to new genre features and are limited to one per company, said Guisa Koestinger.

It will also be showcasing new genre video games and hosting talks by experts in the field. Fantastic Pavilion and Maquinitas, a program first launched at Ventana Sur in 2022, are making a joint call for horror and fantasy video game projects to present at their inaugural ‘Let’s Spook Cannes’ program.

This showroom will take place over May 17-20 and will provide the two selected participants with opportunities to network with potential partners or investors.

Games published between 2022 and this year, or those in a production stage with a release date in 2024, are eligible to participate.

Applications are open online until April 11. The two chosen projects will be announced on April 18 through the Fantastic Pavilion’s social media.

Guillaume Esmiol and Pablo Guisa



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