By most measures, the MIA market in Rome has been a solid success. The eighth edition of the event, which serves as a platform for international series, feature films, animations and documentaries, closed this week, with a 20 percent increase in attendance compared to 2021.
In addition to programming highlights — Warp Films’ the abbessa project billed as a sharp drama about a Machiavellian power struggle between nuns in a convent won this year’s Paramount+ award for best pitch at the MIA Drama Pitching Forum; Forasteraa Spanish drama from its first director Lucia Alenar Iglesias, it received MIA’s new ArteKino International Prize, which aims to support emerging international filmmakers – for many, MIA marked a return to the international market after years of isolation in the COVID era.
“It was a great event, because although it is still small, the quality of the people in the room and the level of the projects presented was very high,” said Matt Brodlie of Upgrade Productions, who like many international producers directly came from MIA. to the MIPCOM television market in Cannes. “You knew these projects were going to be made, it was just a question of who in that room would make them.”
For new MIA director Gaia Tridente, who was promoted this year from her former position as head of MIA’s TV department, it was important to find a place between innovation and sticking to the models that have been used in the past. have worked well. For 2022, Tridente added an animation section and expanded MIA’s international reach — in addition to Brodlie, MIA participants this year included Netflix EMEA content lead Larry Tanz, Apple TV+ commissioning executive Oliver Jones and Lionsgate Television Group president Sandra Stern — while retaining of a focus on Italian projects.
“This isn’t just a trade show, it’s a composite market,” says Tridente. “The guests we invite are invited for a specific reason, to respond to the needs of the market.”
The Hollywood Reporter spoke to Tridente after MIA wrapped up to find out where the Italian industry event is now and what to expect in the future.
How would you rate the results of MIA this year?
It was amazing: we’ve had 2,400 accredited guests, not counting the guests who attended individual events: we’re talking about the industry insiders who actively participated every day. What we need to work on now may be even bigger. Our biggest challenge is to stay up to date and anticipate the biggest innovations in the industry.
Do you think MIA has established itself as a destination for international industry?
I would say. When we talk to several players, it is clear that they are interested in joining MIA [and to] announce their next projects here. There is certainly room for growth. Of course there is some competition with other markets. But we still work together. We know the importance of networking. I don’t just see competitors; I see potential allies to make deals with and move forward together.
One of the main objectives of MIA remains to support the growth of the Italian industry. Why is that?
MIA was born as a tool to make Italian industry international. In 2015, when it was founded, it was a hub, a physical space where people could come together with the support of specialized associations and institutions. For this year, when I was in charge of the television drama section, I noticed a real trend reversal. We used to have to convince people to attend; now people wanted to come alone. This is because the Italian market has grown and there has been more exchange between producers, distributors and creatives.
What are your goals for the next edition?
My hope is to bring together leading producers and creatives for a masterclass cycle, open to a wider audience than just industry people.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.