5 minutes to convince

The profile of Oceania Pitch, now at its third edition, has increased. Three coaches are available to train the pitchers throughout the whole week. In addition dozens of the region’s broadcasters are present during the Pitch session involving a selection of projects reflecting Oceania which are moving and full of energy.

Thursday 9th February: the pitchers have gathered this morning for their last presentation exercise in front of the coach before the fateful moment … Nunë Luepack and Sylvain Derne, the youngest participants, are under scrutiny. They have 5 minutes to convince. Their documentary, ‘Imulal,’ intends to question Caledonian youths, who have left to train in Metropolitan France, about their motivations, hopes and the projects that they are shaping for the future of their country. It is therefore also their shared history and future. They seem immersed in their project, but the coaches pull out all the stops to make them even better: ‘Look at us more, take your time and above all, enjoy yourselves,’ advises Olivier Stroh, the director of the Canal + group Discovery Channel. The pitch is a friendly match so no need to be stressed!’ Laurence Hamelin, programme advisor for France 5’s Découverte slot, continues ‘I love your duo, be confident! Your message is strong enough to get through, don’t try to say it all, it needs to stay fluid.’ Nunë and Sylvain listen, ask questions and agree ‘It’s our first pitch; the advice from the coaches has been essential and has allowed us to progress enormously. We know our subject off by heart, but they have taught us to step back and keep it simple to communicate it better.’ It’s Caroline Marie’s turn with ‘Motu Haka.’ The journalist notably questions the way in which, in light of the Marquesas archipelago’s project to enrol in UNESCO, the young and not so young populations see their culture and its future. ‘You should try to be more natural and attract the attention of those listening to you,’ Olivier Stroh says to her. ‘Remember that it is not an exam, but a meeting!’ Caroline, who was hesitant about the ‘merits’ of her film at the beginning of the week, no longer has any doubt. This training gave her some keys and tips to assert her project. At the end of the morning, all the pitchers have had their turn. They only have several hours to refine the last presentation details but also to rest a little.

Nicolas Zunino, producer and coach from last year too, confides: ‘2012 has a very good project offering. I think that the majority of them will have the opportunity to come to fruition. Oceania Pitch’s progress is felt in the resources, demand and quality of the projects.’ ‘The projects are not all of the same level,’ explains Cathy Marconnet, organiser of the Pitch and a pitcher, but all the pitchers have the same commitment. That is what is really interesting for Oceania, this variety of expressions and slants which are genuinely part of FIFO’s ideology.


Time to hear it…

It is busy in the big marquee, beneath a blazing sun and with stage fright in the air. The forty or so broadcasters present make themselves comfortable: they are from Australia, New Zealand, France, Hawaii, New Caledonia, Tahiti, etc., to listen to and perhaps, it is the aim, to look closely at the films by the pitchers. Each year, the audience also attends these gatherings, curious to assist with the generation of these films which start off with a little story to be told. Like for example, the extraordinary one about a unique and magical circus from Samoa, which has travelled around the Pacific for 20 years; or the unbelievable adventure of the escape of French political prisoners, who at the beginning of the 19th century who managed to reach Australia from Nou Island (New Caledonia) where they were prisoners. There is also the great of episode Tahitian tattooing, the one by Gaston Melies, which the director found several films of around the world that were thought to have disappeared, and which reveal to us, amongst others, the very first images filmed of Tahiti in 1912!

Last year, three pitchers had their project signed by a channel. Nothing less is expected from this 2012 edition…