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TF1 talks to French cinema distributors

French financial newspaper Les Echos is reporting that French commercial network TF1 is talking with French cinema owners and movie distributors in an attempt to gain greater flexibility in how TF1 makes better use of movies it co-finances.

TF1 is looking to achieve more screenings for the same movie and to be able to pre-finance a movie without any obligation to pre-state how it might broadcast the movie.  In exchange, TF1 could increase its co-financing share by merging TF1, TMC and NT1 budgets and by dedicating 2.5 per cent of TMC and NT1 ad revenues to film production.

Investment bank Exane-BNP-Paribas, in a note stated: “Such a broad agreement, similar to what Canal has been doing for years, would be a first for TF1.  Discussions are still at early stage but are apparently going well.  We see the main “battle” for TF1 in TV programs (4x bigger). The discussions show that the most important [element] for TF1 is flexibility rather than lower absolute commitment to French content. We continue to expect gradual improvement in TF1 regulatory framework in the next 12-18 months as all stakeholders realize current regulation is unfit in a digital age.”

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