PARIS ― The information and communications office of the French Armed Forces Ministry will attend the Cannes Film Festival in a bid to promote stronger ties between cinema production and the military, the ministry said.

“This attendance is part of the ambitious cultural policy of the Armed Forces Ministry, the government’s second-largest cultural player, and seeks to contribute a better understanding of the defense world through works of fiction, while respecting the artistic freedom of producers,” the ministry said in a May 9 statement.

The ministry, through its Cinema Mission team, invites film executives to book appointments and pitch projects May 10-15, while working with the festival’s association, Around 15 Directors.

Cinema Mission will also hold a roundtable debate with the Interior Ministry on May 15, titled “Challenge reality: Armed Forces and Police in audiovisual and cinema creation.”

The Armed Forces Ministry set up the Cinema Mission team in a bid to strengthen ties between the services and audiovisual and film production, from advice on drafting scripts to communications at the time of distribution. There is also an offer of military advisers for filming, making equipment available, access to archives, funding and co-production.

Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly signed Sept. 26 an agreement with the head of the French screenwriters guild, Pauline Rocafull, seeking to extend official help for scripts on the defense theme. That accord included approval for embedding screenwriters in military units.

The film festival opened May 8 and closes May 19.

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