Jerome Bellard spends most of the year in Paris before moving his entire office to Cannes 10 days before the film’s career begins. He joined Marché in 1995 after a career in the music industry and spent the next 27 years turning the event into the world’s largest film market, with innovations including the creation of Cinando’s online database. This is the last copy of the Paillard before the Marché mantle was handed over to Guillaume Esmiol for the year 2023.
What is your office like?
My office in Paris has been a bit of a mess for the past few months as I share with him [co-executive director] Guillaume Esmiol, who takes over from me. We’re going to Cannes too. The big difference is that in Paris I have an office overlooking Notre Dame and in Cannes my office is in the basement of the château. No light, no view. But it is effective.
What’s the first thing you do when you arrive at your office each day?
My day starts before the office. I read my emails at home. I no longer drink coffee, so I jump straight into my activities.
What do you drink if not coffee?
It depends on the time during the day I drink water. I’m French, so I love wine. In Cannes I love the rose. It is a red wine in Paris, Cotes de Rhone. I also like rum and vodka. We have a tradition every night with the Cannes team – we do ti’punch. It’s a Martinique drink – a little sugar, a little lime, and a lot of rum. It can be dangerous!
What was your first job in the film industry?
My background is in classical music, and I started as a sound engineer and producer at a recording company called Erato. When it was purchased by Gaumont, Danielle Toscan de Blantyre, who then ran Gaumont, offered me the role of general manager of Erato Films. With him she has produced about 15 films, many with international directors.
Who are you looking for in the industry?
Working with Daniel was very inspiring. He had a vision. He was very supportive of talents.
Who helped you the most when you were first?
One of the first films produced by Mehdi Sherif, Au Pays De Juliets. I had negotiations with France TV. When we signed the contract, the president of France 3 cinema taunted me and said, “You did a very bad deal. Now I will teach you how to negotiate.” That was very useful for me.
What was your favorite movie growing up?
The first big movie I saw was Stanley Kubrick 2001: space flightWith my parents when I was about 10 or 11 years old.
What are you most proud of? professionally?
I am very proud of making the Marché du Film what it is now. I would say “we”. We built it with the team. It is a collective success.
What is the biggest challenge facing the business?
Cinema [industry] It has really big challenges, but I am confident that solutions will be found and I am confident that theaters will have a role to play. But I think it’s all in [industry] It should reinvent itself a bit – including the Marché du Film.
Is that why you’re ready to reinvent your own?
I’m 66, I’m 66, I’ve realized that life isn’t forever. I have many interests and I want to enjoy them and enjoy my family. Cinema is taking a big turn and someone has to write the next twenty years. I can’t be the one writing that new page.
What do you do next?
I will continue to be involved in managing Ventana Sur in Buenos Aires and consulting with Marché. I will join the board of directors of a film company and have been invited to visit many festivals. I’m excited to have time to do this and watch more movies.
What book are you reading?
I finished Stefan Zweig’s book Magellan A few weeks ago. It combines a lot of my interests as it relates to travel, Latin America and sailing and is very cinematic.
What do you do to relax?
This depends on the amount of time I have. I listen to music and play it. I love playing tennis, traveling and flying. I am a flight instructor. It’s a way to clear my mind. It’s important to me to have something when I’m not thinking about anything else.
What was your favorite moment in Cannes?
The most memorable was that first year. I’ve been to Cannes many times before with Erato Films, but this was my first time indoors. This Marché’s new launch has been very exciting.
Who will play you on your resume and who will be the director?
I can’t imagine this – I’m too shy.