Laurence Herszberg, founder and general director of Series Mania, announced the confirmed dates for Series Mania’s 2021 edition. Set to take place in Lille, France, and the Hauts-de-France region, the Series Mania Festival is set for March 19 to 27 and the Series Mania Forum, to be held in the Lille Grand Palais, is set for March 23 to 25. As one of the largest international events exclusively dedicated to series returns with a new ambition to make Series Mania a permanent tool for the promotion of series creation, Series Mania has developed three new initiatives.

“In recent years, we have seen a major evolution in the audiovisual fiction landscape. First, is the significant increase in the volume of series. Second, is the emergence of new working methods resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic which have both reinforced festivals as essential events and ‘rendezvous’, but also confirmed the importance of online tools. Finally, it is the need expressed by the audiovisual sector to bring forward new voices, new talent, and new projects,” commented Laurence Herszberg.

In order to meet these new challenges, Series Mania is proud to announce the following new initiatives:

The launch of the Series Mania Label

Throughout the year, the Series Mania team watches hundreds of new series coming from all over the world. Going forward on a permanent basis, Series Mania will offer its recommendations to the public through its digital presence and online video content, as well as the organization of premiere screening year-round in Lille. The selected festival-supported series will be awarded the Series Mania Label with the aim of developing their notoriety and visibility.

The expansion of Series Mania Digital

Expanding on the Series Mania Digital Forum, which was successfully launched earlier this year, Series Mania will now come forward with an expanded digital platform where it will be possible to follow the evolution of projects and talent selected by the Series Mania Forum, as well as to access exclusive content (webinars, training courses, and more) and an international network of contacts. Beginning in September, Series Mania Digital will become a year-round initiative to encourage projects in development, through a lively and interactive networking platform. This digital platform will bring together members of the industry to strengthen networking links initiated in previous editions.

The unveiling of the Series Mania Institute, a training venue for tomorrow’s European talent

Since its creation, Series Mania has positioned itself as a true “talent scout” for new creators, in particular through the scriptwriting residencies hosted by Series Mania Forum: UGC Writers Campus, SeriesLab (a TorinoFilmLab initiative), and the Israel-France Co-Writing Residency (initiated by the CNC and Gesher Multicultural Film Fund). In order to identify as early as possible new international talent, and to develop European creative networks, the festival is today launching the Series Mania Institute. Set to be housed in Lille, its mission will be to reinforce the training of European professionals in the field of series and audiovisual content, based on three fundamental axes:

– Gathering international know-how in the field of series scriptwriting in order to create tomorrow’s European network of creative talent

-Unifying all professions of the series industry, including scriptwriters, directors, producers and broadcasters, in order to have them develop a cohesive working culture

– Encouraging the emergence of new talent from a diversity of backgrounds and origins

The Series Mania Institute will be organized in partnership with La Fémis (supported by the CNC) and the Hauts-de-France Region and will offer several training courses for different audiences beginning in 2021. Further information and names of more partners will be released later this fall.

“We are pleased to contribute to the development of a European-ambitioned initiative in the area of series professionals”, says Nathalie Coste-Cerdan, Managing Director of La Fémis. “The Series Mania Institute is in line with what we think is needed for specific teaching on the serial genre and for European professionals to share their know-how.”

“Series Mania Lille-Hauts-de-France made the region a permanent crossroads for audiovisual talent and decision-makers. With these new projects, Series Mania goes further in the creation process. The Series Mania Institute will allow us to boost specific training in audiovisual professions”, says Xavier Bertrand, President of the Hauts-de-France Region.