Planet Quebec at South by Southwest™ - Québec’s creators earn recognition and praise for their talent

Quebec City, March 17, 2014 - The Planet Quebec showcase at South by Southwest (SXSW), which took place from March 7 to 15, 2014 in Austin, Texas, was once again an overwhelming success. Québec’s expertise and talent gained further recognition at Planet Quebec’s fourth appearance, as several creators distinguished themselves, including Québec-based company Synbiota and directors Monia Chokri and Vincent Morisset, who each received an award.

Three distinctions for Québec

Synbiota won the SXSW® Accelerator competition in the Innovative World Technologies category for its distinctive virtual collaboration platform, which allows the scientific community around the globe to share expertise and use genetic engineering techniques to solve highly complex problems.

Vincent Morisset, director and founder of AATOAA studio, won an Interactive Award in the Music category for his video of the song Just a Reflektor by Montreal-based group Arcade Fire. This is the second award he has received at SXSW; his first award was given to him in 2012 in the Art category for his BLA BLA, a film for computer project.

Finally, director and actress Monia Chokri was presented the award for best narrative short film for Quelqu’un d’extraordinaire. It should be noted that over 2,000 films were submitted to SXSW 2014 in this category.

Business opportunities for the taking

At the trade show, Québec drew quite a bit of attention with remarkable companies like Brandicted, Float4 and Kiwili, and thanks to representatives from Investissement Québec and the Québec Film and Television Council. During their visit, several hundreds of visitors made their way to the Planet Quebec stand to learn more about business opportunities in Québec and its strategic position as an innovation hub in interactive media, film and music. The Interactive Media activities were coordinated by Export Québec.

“Coming to SXSW to launch our Web site and talk to potential business partners is a unique opportunity for a company like ours and an unbelievable experience. We are already feeling the effects of our participation and are planning to return next year," explained Jonathan Stoikovitch, President of Brandicted.

Music event is a big hit

Thousands of admissions were counted at Maggie Mae's, a bar and music venue, during the two days it was reserved for Planet Quebec’s music acts. Festival-goers and industry professionals were won over by the infectious beats of the twenty some Québec music groups that came to show off their talent.

“Any up-and-coming artist who hopes to develop an international audience has to be in Austin for SXSW." Planet Quebec gives us an opportunity to be seen and heard by industry leaders," explained FOXTROTT.

In addition to introducing Québec’s musical trends to SXSW audiences, both the artists and the organizations presenting them (Envol et Macadam, Pop Montreal, M for Montreal and Scene 1425) used this major international event to develop new markets. One of the activities in which the organizations participated was a Planet Quebec networking event designed to put them in contact with other international festivals. Music events were coordinated by the Société de développement des entreprises culturelles, in cooperation with the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications.

A warm reception for Québec directors

Stage Fright, a horror musical comedy directed by Jérôme Sable, made its world premiere at SXSW. Short fiction films Nous avions by Stéphane Moukarzel and Quelqu'un d'extraordinaire by Monia Chokri were screened four times for packed houses.

Planet Quebec, a collective success

It should be noted that Planet Quebec’s showing at SXSW was made possible by cooperation between the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications and the Ministère des Relations internationales et de la Francophonie. Other contributors included the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, the Société de développement des entreprises culturelles and the Offices jeunesse internationaux du Québec. In addition, the Québec Government Office in Atlanta worked closely with these organizations on the fourth Planet Quebec, which included Tourisme Québec as a partner in 2014.

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