The Fantasia International Film Festival, in Montreal, was attracting an ever-increasing number of film professionals since its foundation in 1996. In 2011, for its 15th edition, the festival decided to devote a specific week-end to welcome members of the industry, making it the first unofficial edition of the Fantasia Industry Rendez-Vous, which resulted in a great increase in attendance. In 2012, the festival not only decided to officialize the event, but fortify it with an innovative event: the Frontières International Co-Production Market. Born from the popularity of many other co-production market around the world and the complete lack of event specific to the genre film industry, Frontières became the first market to concentrate specifically on genre film co-production in-between North-America, Europe and Australasia.
In its inaugural 2012 edition, Frontières presented 14 projects, as well as 10 Off-Frontières projects, ailing from Quebec and Canada, the USA, Mexico, France, the UK, Australia and New Zealand. It notably included projects from Justin Benson & Aaron Moorehead, Paul Campion, Yves-Christian Fournier, Stuart Gordon, Jorge Michel Grau, Jon Hewitt, Bruce McDonald, Steven C. Miller, Robert Morgan and Simon Rumley. The projects’ attached filmmakers and producers will be given a chance to meet with international producers, sales agents and distributors looking for projects to get involved with. The event attracted 250 filmmakers and film executives from these territories.
To participate in Frontières, the selected projects had to be market premieres with a completed script and needed to be applicable to an international co-production environment where there is ideally be a Canadian production element (either in terms of production location, cast or crew, or post-production). They needed to have a domestic producer attached, although some exceptions were made for exceptional talents looking to find a new producer. The Off-Frontières selection allowed for the inclusion of projects that did not fit all of these guidelines. The market was open to both seasoned directors and directors proposing their first feature film project.
For its second edition, in 2013, Frontières curated 12 projects, as well as 12 Off-Frontières projects, from Quebec and Canada, the USA, Mexico, the UK, Ireland, France, Spain, Germany, Poland and New Zealand. It notably included projects from Joe Dante, Maurice Devereaux, Jeremy Gillespie & Steven Kostanski, Buddy Giovinazzo, Bobcat Goldthwait, Caradog James, Josh Johnson, Jason Lapeyre, Michael Peterson, Michael & Shawn Rasmussen, Franck Richard, Boris Rodriguez, Richard Stanley and Andrzej Zulawski. The event increased its reach with 280 attendants and improved locations.
In 2013, Frontières also successfully won a bid with MEDIA Mundus funding, to expand the market to Europe. Frontières will thus have 2 editions in 2014, its third one in Brussels from April 10 to 12, during the Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival, followed by its fourth one in Montreal from July 24 to 27, during the Industry Rendez-Vous of the Fantasia International Film Festival.