MIPCOM unveils plans for 20th anniversary

MUMBAI: Mipcom 2004, the world's television and entertainment market in autumn and Mipcom Junior, the international showcase for children's programming, have announced their programme of events covering a wide range of highly relevant topics for the international television industry.

Mipcom 2004 will be held from 4 October to 8 October and the MIPCOM Junior from 2 October to 3 October in Cannes.

According to an official release, the upswing in attendance seen at MIPCOM 2003 is expected to continue for 2004 and Reed MIDEM, organisers of Mipcom, expect over 10, 200 participants in Cannes this October.

Director of the Television Division at Reed Midem Paul Johnson is quoted in the release as saying, "The 20th edition of Mipcom will host a particularly broad and relevant range of conferences on new emerging sectors in the industry such as advertising, interactive content for mobile devices, licensing and merchandising, DVD and High Definition.

In addition to the breadth of the topics debated this year, our conferences will present numerous leading professionals and key players from the audiovisual sector".

For the first time at Mipcom, an international giant of the advertising division will deliver a keynote speech to market attendees on 5 October, président du directoire de Publicis Groupe Maurice Lévy will look at the new relationships that are developing between the worlds of advertising and television.

As part of the dedicated conferences on licencing and merchandising, Disney Consumer Products chairman Andy Mooney will present a keynote address on 4 October, examining the latest trends in children's television licencing and merchandising.

RTL Group CEO Gerhard Zeiler has been nominated Mipcom 2004's Personality of the Year. The accolade recognises Zeiler's outstanding career and the success of the entire RTL Group. Top international television executives will attend a VIP gala dinner on 6 October to honour both Gerhard Zeiler and RTL Group, the release continues.

In partnership with the French Ministry of Culture and Communication and the Centre National de la Cinématographie (CNC), Mipcom has designated 5 October as France Day. Throughout the event, a series of conferences, presentations and workshops will highlight the best of French television production, the strategies of leading programme exporters and promote the increasingly vibrant regional commissions who seek to bring national and international film and television production activity to their doorsteps.

As part of the celebrations, TVFI president Jean-Louis Guillaud will receive the MIPCOM "Prix d'Excellence" award for his contribution to French television.

Debuting this year are the Mipcom DVD Awards, 6 October. In partnership with the DVD Association (DVDA, USA) and the International Video Federation (IVF, Belgium) the awards will pay tribute to the creativity that makes DVD-viewing such an original and enjoyable experience and will reward the best artistic quality in graphic design, web features, interactivity, navigation devices, content restoration and bonus features.

A focus on book publishing will be included in the conference programme for the first time. The panel, entitled "Book to TV/ Film: What are you missing out on?" organised in partnership with the London Book Fair, examines the developing links between producers and publishers and how to adapt original written works to film. Leading publishing houses participating in the case study session include: HarperCollins Entertainment, Orion Publishing Group, Curtis Brown and Penguin Television.

High definition specialist companies will also come together at Mipcom 2004. In collaboration with Outside Broadcast (Belgium), MIPCOM has organised a series of conferences, 6 October, dedicated to this evolving market and will broadcast screenings in HD over 4 days (4 October - 7 October, Auditorium K, Palais des Festivals).

Milia, the international forum for interactive content will make an impressive entrance at Mipcom, presenting 5 conference sessions on the impact of new media and digital technologies in the future of television.

Finally, in celebration of its 20th anniversary, Mipcom's opening cocktail, sponsored by LatinAmerican Television Corporation and Twentieth Century Fox Television Distribution, is slated to take place in the Martinez Hotel on 4 October. Fox TV stars including Nicole Richie (The Simple Life), Lake Bell (Boston Legal), Brooke Burns (North Shore), Portia de Rossi (Arrested Development) and Marjolaine (Marjolaine et les Millionnaires - Joe Millionaire - Season 2) will light up the evening.

Preceding Mipcom, the 12th edition of Mipcom Junior would reveal the latest international programmes for youth viewing and present two days of exceptional conferences on the theme of licencing and merchandising. Kicking off for the first time is the Mipcom Junior Licencing Challenge, an event put together by the MIPCOM team in partnership with Licence! magazine, on 3 October.

An international jury, chaired by Warren Kornblum, chief marketing officer of Toys "R" Us, Inc., will evaluate the licencing and merchandising prospects of selected programmes. Continuing on this theme, MIPCOM Junior attendees will have the chance to participate in a licencing and merchandising workshop, featuring experts from the International Licensing Industry Merchandisers' Association (LIMA), officially represented at the event for the first time. Other events including the "Programmers Showcase", the "Licensing Club" and the case studies "Conquering America " will contribute to Mipcom Junior highlights, concluded the release.

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