February 23rd, 2022 | by Mathieu Gayet

“VR is a component of a more global technological and creative movement” - Guy Daleiden (Film Fund Luxembourg)

Guy Daleiden is the director of the Film Fund Luxembourg, a funding institution for cinema, audiovisual and new media in Luxembourg, and as such the organizer of the VR Pavilion within the framework of the Luxembourg City Film Festival, which takes place this year from March 3 to 13. With a dedicated VR program for the past 5 years (piloted in collaboration with Myriam Achard and the Phi Center of Montreal), a competition, prizes and professional days, the event fully integrates new writing alongside more traditional creation.

Virtual reality at the Luxembourg City Film Festival

Guy Daleiden - The Luxembourg City Film Festival was created in 2011, supported by the Ministry of Culture and the City of Luxembourg. We historically program "flat" films from the cinema, with an international competition. Five years ago, we started to take an interest in virtual reality and new creative formats by proposing a VR Pavilion in our official selection. Quickly we, the Film Fund Luxembourg, met the Phi Center (Myriam Achard) and we decided to co-produce this part of the event with them. Our meeting was a natural one, their work being a reference in this sector.

G. D. - The Film Fund Luxembourg aims to support the production and distribution of these new formats. For us, it is above all to encourage international co-production with other countries, but also to support local productions. The programming of the festival echoes this; it was about inviting artists from all over the world to come and participate, to offer a global program on what is happening in the VR industry. The enthusiasm and the view of the Phi Center on these new forms of creation convinced us to work together. From there we found a cultural center in Luxembourg to host us.

For 5 years now, PHI has been supporting the Film Fund Luxembourg in its production, exhibition and distribution activities of immersive works. We are very proud of this relationship, which has, among other things, allowed us to position Luxembourg on the XR scene. The renowned professionals who come to the Grand Duchy every year and the quality of the works exhibited are proof of the festival's importance on the international circuit.
- Myriam Achard (Centre Phi)

An VR Pavilion, but also professional meetings

G. D. - Inside the festival, we present a space dedicated to immersive creations, the professional days and of course the competition part. From the beginning we wanted to treat XR works like the rest of the official program. At the Luxembourg City Film Festival, virtual reality is fully integrated into the festivities - right up to a prize awarded at the closing ceremony! It is very important to have this approach with the public, so that the selection is fully accessible.


G. D. - The last two editions (2020, 2021) were limited by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, we took the opportunity of a last 100% virtual edition to launch the VR TO GO program of the Phi Center, in Luxembourg. This year the festival will take place physically, with a dozen installations and a VR cinema. This VR cinema will continue to operate until mid-April and the VR TO GO formula will start on March 14, and we want to perpetuate this possibility of VR circulation thereafter with new works. This is also a way for us to reach out to the public. For example, LE BAL DE PARIS DE BLANCA LI will be proposed in standalone version, during and after the festival.


An XR for impact selection

G. D. - There is a real will to demonstrate the real impact of such immersive works, and not to make a selection for the form. Virtual reality is above all a story to be experienced: there are undeniable storytelling qualities in the selected experiences. There are also visual, sound and interactive prowess... But above all we want to present strong narratives. THE BOOK OF DISTANCE is a perfect example of an interactive and mastered realization, but it is also an exciting message. In the same vein, we are looking forward to presenting a new local work, THE ASSEMBLY. We hope to offer immersive contexts that make the audience think about the world today.

A showcase for an immersive Luxembourg

G. D. - At the Luxembourg City Film Festival 2022, there are two experiences co-produced with Luxembourg. But we will also present out of competition an experience by Karolina Markiewicz and Pascal Piron who produced it here. Our country has become, thanks to our proactive intervention, one of the places of production and co-production for virtual reality. It was necessary to anticipate the arrival of this new format, of new technologies, in order to welcome projects to the Fund - with the support of the government of course.


G. D. - Today, VR is a component of a larger movement around technologies at the service of creation. We are careful to adapt our discussions with professionals to anticipate this. This makes Luxembourg one of the leading partners in the co-production of international projects. One of the next supported projects, SWEET DREAMS with a_BAHN and Marshmallow Laser Feast, is the proof. And we look forward to seeing you at the professional day on March 3rd to learn more!

VRDay: the professional meetings (March 3)

10:00 - OPENING

Guy Daleiden, CEO, Film Fund Luxembourg
Myriam Achard, Chief, New Media Partnerships and PR, PHI Montréal

10:15 - In conversation with...

How is the pandemic affecting the XR industry? Have festivals and venues adapted to “the new normal”? What types of projects resonate with audiences? Comment la pandémie impacte-t-elle le secteur de la XR ? Les festivals et lieux se sont-ils adaptés à la nouvelle donne ? Quels projets trouvent leurs publics ?

Speakers: Myriam Achard, Ana Brzezińska, Anaïs Emery, Michel Reilhac - Moderator: Monique Simard

Spotlight on...

The artists and producers behind the works shown at the 2022 VR Pavilion: creative processes, funding structures, business models, distribution opportunities and pandemic-related challenges. Parole aux artistes et créateurs des oeuvres exposées au Pavillon VR 2022 : processus de création, financements, modèles d’entreprise, potentiel de distribution et défis liés à la pandémie.

Speakers: Mads Damsbo, Avi Amar, Audrey Pacart, Michael O’Connor, Charlotte Bruneau - Intro and Moderator: Myriam Achard

14:00 - Branching out...

How and why XR creators and producers diversify their business to stay on top of production methods, distribution trends, audience taste and market developments. La diversification des activités pour rester au fait des dernières tendances de production et de distribution, des évolutions du marché et des appétits du public.

Speakers: Antoine Cayrol, Nicolas Blies & Stéphane Hueber-Blies, Tupac Martir, Laurent Witz - Moderator: Marine Haverland

Exploring new opportunities in the Greater Region...

Exhibiting and curating XR works at museums and festivals in Luxembourg and its surroundings. Quelles opportunités pour la XR dans les lieux culturels et les festivals au Luxembourg et dans les pays limitrophes ?

Speakers: Marie du Chastel, Laure Hendrickx, Christophe Salomon, Karolina Markiewicz - Moderator: Yves Conrardy

Mapping the way to the future...

New pathways for XR and the audiovisual industry? How can XR survive and thrive in 2022 and beyond? La prochaine frontière de la XR et de l’industrie audiovisuelle : comment promouvoir et faire prospérer les nouveaux formats en 2022 et au-delà ?

Speakers: Michel Reilhac, Antoine Cayrol, Olivier Fontenay, Guy Daleiden, Gilles Jobin - Moderator: Ana Brzezińska

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