Cannes, May 2022 – COLCOA Renamed

CANNES, May 20, 2022


America’s First and Largest French Film Festival Launches into its 26th Year with a New Name and Renewed Dedication to Showcasing the Best and Brightest in French Cinema and Series

The Franco-American Cultural Fund (FACF) announced today that the COLCOA French Film Festival has been renamed The American French Film Festival. The 26th edition of the festival and its awards competition will take place October 10-16 as a live event held at the Directors Guild of America Theater on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood.

“As Honorary President of the Franco-American Cultural Fund, I am proud to have accompanied this festival for more than 25 years,” said Costa-Gavras.“Having seen it grow, evolve and become one of the most important events in the United States entirely dedicated to French cinema and television, I have absolutely no doubt that it is THE American French Film Festival, and I welcome this new name that suits the festival perfectly.”.

COLCOA was originally launched in 1996 and grew considerably over the past two plus decades, adding TV series before any other festivals in North America, a high school screenings program, a high-profile awards program and more. Last year was the Festival’s 25th anniversary and, after the global pandemic shut down most live events, it made a triumphant return to the DGA Theater Complex. Over 14,000 people attended the week-long event.

“For the last 25 years, COLCOA was the festival to bring French film to the heart of Hollywood,” said François Truffart, Executive Producer and Programmer.“Looking ahead, we wanted to make our purpose and ongoing mission even more clear. The American French Film Festival is the first, largest and most-exclusive showcase of emerging and established French filmmakers in America.”

The Festival is significant for French filmmakers as this is a unique opportunity to have their films or series watched and awarded by an audience mainly comprised of industry members in Hollywood at the beginning of the Awards season. Each year, several of the films are picked up for US distribution after being screened here. In 2021, films like BLACK BOX and GALLANT INDIES were acquired after debuting at the Festival.

“As we celebrated our quarter century anniversary last year, we were moved by how our community of filmmakers, francophiles and film enthusiasts came out in force in one of the more challenging times we have ever experienced,” said Anouchka Van Riel, Deputy Director. “Now, as we rebrand as The American French Film Festival, we are poised to move into an exciting era of cross-cultural exchanges and artistic development supported by incredible partners like BNP Paribas and L’Oréal, which adds to the dynamic range of our mission of Americans discovering French cinema, television, and culture.”

The American French Film Festival offers a unique platform to promote French films and series at the beginning of the Awards Season in Hollywood. Annually, the festival brings the highest-caliber French filmmakers and talent to Los Angeles for red carpet premieres, numerous panels and screenings, as well as the opportunity for high-profile collaborations between French and American professionals. In addition, more than 20,000 audience members – including journalists, industry professionals, the general public and students – attend the festival annually.

The American French Film Festival

Formerly known as COLCOA French Film Festival) the American French Film Festival was created and is produced by the Franco-American Cultural Fund, a unique collaboration between the Directors Guild of America (DGA), the Motion Picture Association (MPA), France’s Society of Authors, Composers and Publishers of Music (SACEM) and the Writers Guild of America West (WGAW). COLCOA is also supported by Unifrance, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, France’s Society of Authors, Directors and Producers (l’ARP), by TVFI, Air Tahiti Nui, Bank of the West/BNP Paribas, L’Oréal, TV5 Monde/Sling and Variety. The American French Film Festival Education Program is supported by ELMA.

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