International distribution support
The project support for international distribution, which is aimed at supporting the sale of Finnish films abroad, seeks to encourage and help facilitate the wider distribution of film to foreign cinema screens in different countries.
The global pandemic has hampered the international sale of films and significantly slowed down the theatrical releases of films around the world. With the help of this targeted project support, we hope that sales companies will be able to enter into distribution agreements in more territories, that international distributors will commit to Finnish content, and that they will invest in local marketing – in this way, the primary beneficiaries of the support will be the Finnish film producers. We will also consider applications for marketing efforts aimed for the film’s VOD distribution, for well-founded reasons.
The application period starts on the 1st of August 2022 and ends on the 14th of October 2022 at 4pm local time (UTC+3).
The aim of the grant
The aim is to encourage and support the international cinema distribution of Finnish films as well as to increase their international commercial opportunities. The aim is also to support a more effective international distribution campaign for the films in order for them to reach the audiences.
The targeted project support for international distribution can be granted to a Finnish film production company or an organization registered in Finland. The film’s primary country of production must be Finland. The support can be granted for the distribution of Finnish films outside of Finland when the film has a foreign professional distributor.
The production company coordinates the application for the grant as well as the payment to the foreign distributor. The application must be made in cooperation with the foreign distributor, and the possible sales company, as the international distribution and marketing plans and the international budget, which will be required in the application, are prepared by the local distributor.
The support for cultural exports, in which this grant also falls under, are primarily granted for films which have received production support from the Finnish Film Foundation. The support can be granted to completed or forthcoming feature films, short or documentary films, animated or children’s films, or combinations thereof. The film receiving the support must meet the criteria for a cultural product, outlined in the Special Conditions section.
Support can be granted to films up to three (3) years after their premiere in Finland. Support can be applied for at the earliest when the distribution agreement has been signed and no later than three (3) months after the local premiere.
For what purpose and how much is the support?
The purpose is to support the theatrical distribution of Finnish films either in one country or in several territories/market areas outside of Finland. We also consider applications for marketing efforts aimed for the film’s VOD distribution, for well-founded reasons.
Targeted project support for international distribution can be applied for theatrical distribution and the planning and implementation of the distribution in one or more territories. The support may be used in film copy or marketing materials, regional marketing campaigns and dubbing. The purpose of the grant is to enable additional investment in the film’s international distribution. It must be indicated in the application what additional measures will be taken with the support of the grant that expand the regular distribution measures.
The grant amount for one film in one country or one territory is limited to EUR 7,000. The same application can be used to seek support for several territories. The maximum amount of funds that can be granted to one film is EUR 40,000. The support granted in the previous round of international distribution support will be taken into account when granting the new round of support.
The foreign distributor’s own investment in the film’s distribution must be at least equal to the amount that is applied from the Foundation’s targeted project support for distribution.
The minimum guarantee must be paid in full before applying. The grant cannot be included in the contract between the producer and the sales company (i.e., it cannot be counted as part of the minimum guarantee).
How are the applications evaluated?
Project support for international promotion is discretionary support. Granting of the support is based on overall evaluation and comparison of the applications.
The following guidelines, among others, are used in the evaluation of the applications:
The evaluation of the applications will consider the realistic and innovative implementation plan of the local distribution, a clear and well-thought-out purpose and professional partners.
In addition, the applicant’s artistic, professional and financial means to complete the project will be taken into account, as well as the overall available funds.
The total amount of the targeted project support is EUR 150,000.
How to apply?
The grant can be applied through the Finnish Film Foundation’s application system, up until the closing date set out in this announcement.
The application consists of the following sections:
- application form
- attachments to the application
- attachments of the applicant
The applicant must prepare the attachments in collaboration with the foreign distributor or the international sales agent/company.
Obligatory application attachments:
- application form adhering to the Finnish Film Foundation’s application template
- distribution and marketing plan made by the foreign distributor
- a budget in line with the Finnish Film Foundation’s template, detailing the marketing and distribution activities that will be implemented with the support of the grant
- International distribution company’s certificate of registration
- list of films distributed by the foreign distribution company within the past two years, including the distribution platform, ticket sales and the admission numbers
- a copy of the contract between the producer and the sales agent/company
- a copy of the distribution agreement between the sales agent and the distribution company (i.e. long form distribution agreement)
- proof of payment of the minimum guarantee (if applicable)
Applicant’s obligatory attachments
- financial statement for the most recently ended fiscal year
- a valid extract from the Trade Register, no older than six months
- a certificate of paid taxes, no older than three months
- a certificate of paid pension insurance premiums, no older than three months
- a current list of shareholders (Limited Liability Companies Act, Chapter 3). The list of shareholders is delivered once and updated, if changes in ownership occur
The support may be granted for the distribution of a film regarded as a cultural product, that
- forms an artistic entirety;
- that has content based on cultural values originating in cultural identity; and
- that contains a significant input by creators and artists, and the share of production costs comprising of salaries and fees payable to them is notable
The project’s expenses are approved without regard to VAT.
Finnish Film Foundation may request further information if it deems it necessary for the decision-making process.
A prerequisite for granting the support is that the recipient has complied with possible earlier support agreements and met the conditions set forth by them. In the case the same film has received international distribution support in 2021, the final report from this must be delivered before the first installment of the new support can be paid.
The recipient must provide a written and financial report detailing the use of the support funds.
Finnish Film Foundation oversees the use of the grant and has the right to audit the recipient’s finances and operations.
The actualized overall funding of the project must not exceed the project’s actualized costs.
The support cannot be granted if the application is insufficient, and if the required information is not uploaded into the online application system despite requests to do so.
Payment of support
The granted support will be paid to the beneficiary’s Finnish bank account, indicated in the application, in two instalments as follows:
- instalment of 80% in the first instance after the decision
- instalment of 20% once the final report has been approved by the Finnish Film Foundation
The beneficiary must indicate in all possible publications that the project has received support from The Finnish Film Foundation, for example with the logo or a phrase “We have received support for this activity from the Finnish Film Foundation.”
The granted support must be used, and the final report submitted no later than one (1) year after the grant decision is taken.
The second grant instalment (20%) will be paid once the final report has been approved by the Finnish Film Foundation. The final report must include:
- A detailed report on actual costs an information on actual funding for the distribution and marketing, in relation to the support provided by the Finnish Film Foundation. The final report must indicate which measures were taken with the support of the grant.
- The production company must verify that the amount of the support granted has been transferred to the collaborating company, through for example, a copy of an account statement.
- A written analysis of the film’s release and marketing
- All significant statistics (e.g. admission numbers, number of VOD views, festival screenings, information on licensing agreements, press articles, etc.)
Information about the decisions
Finnish Film Foundation’s managing board makes the decisions on the targeted project support for international film distribution according to a proposal by the Finnish Film Foundation’s Director.
Applicants will receive the decision in writing.
The decisions are announced by November 25, 2022.
The decision is based on the Act on the Government’s Support for the Promotion of Film Culture (1174/2018), the Act on Discretionary Government Transfers (688/2001) and the Administrative Procedure Act (434/2003).
Application form (docx, filled out by the Finnish applicant)
Budget form (xlsx, filled out by the distributor)
Head of International Department
• managing international promotion
• project support for international promotion: feature films
+ 358 9 6220 3026
International Promotion Coordinator
• festival distribution strategy for feature films
• travel support and material support for international promotion: feature films
+ 358 9 6220 3032
Advisor / International Promotion and Cultural Export of Documentary Films
• deputy Jan 28 – Dec 8, 2022
• festival distribution strategy for documentary films
• travel support and material support for international promotion: documentary films
+ 358 44 491 9069