Organizers of the Atlantic Film Festival in Halifax are hoping the eight-day festival will strengthen business ties between local artists and members of the entertainment industry from around the world.

The 32nd annual Atlantic Film Festival — which opened on Thursday — is expected to attract more than 900 people.

One of the programs at the festival is Music and Image — a partnership between the Atlantic Film Festival Association and the East Coast Music Association.

It's designed to bridge the gap between music and film and serve as a venue for local musicians to audition for producers hoping to license music for soundtracks.

David Hayman, a Toronto-based producer, said he's come to the festival for the second year in a row.

"Brands are getting into all sorts of things. We're calling it transmedia," he told CBC News.

"The bridge between all the cross-platforms that are out there and we want to make East Coast music a part of that."

At the Lord Nelson Hotel, members of the film industry from 20 different countries will discuss financing for possible co-productions through the festival's Strategic Partners program.

Film, video and television production in Nova Scotia generated $115 million last year.

Wayne Carter, the executive director of the Atlantic Film Festival, said festival ticket sales are running ahead of last year — in part because many of the films and documentaries have already been shown at the Toronto International Film Festival, where they generated buzz.

"TIFF is such a maelstrom of media coverage. We benefit from that," he told CBC News.

"When people are talking about films making noise in Toronto, Haligonians and Atlantic Canadians look at the Atlantic Film Festival lineup and go, 'Oh, this film is going to be playing at the Atlantic Film Festival this week, we need to go see that.'"