Country Focus: Spain
Government and film industry start working together on a new funding model
by Sergio Ríos Pérez
- About a year after the Spanish government’s then new responsible for culture José Ignacio Wert announced his intention to change the public funding model for films (read more), a commission has been formed to look into a new model. It includes ministerial departments with competencies in the field as well as different associations from the film and audiovisual sector.
Much has happened in the last year, from the standstill in production during the first months of 2012 (read more) to the VAT increase on cinema tickets by 13 percentage points (read more), via the drastic reduction of funds assigned to the ICAA (and therefore to aid to films, read more) and a series of other more or less fortunate announcements.
Better late than never. All those who assisted the commission’s first meeting on December 5 highlighted the historical importance of bringing together the different sectors and all the ministerial departments directly or indirectly involved in funding film and audiovisual works for the first time.
From National State Administration, the commission includes representatives from the ministry of the Presidency and Vicepresidency of the Government, that of Economy and Competitiveness, that of Treasury and Public Administration, and that of Industry, Energy, and Tourism, as well as the Spanish Cultural Action agency (ACE) and the ICAA. From the film and audiovisual industry, participants included members of producer associations (FAPAE, PROA, AEC), distributor associations (FEDICINE), and exhibitor associations (FECE), as well as representatives from television stations and other broadcasting channels (TVE, FORTA, UTECA, Prisa TV, Ono, CONECTA), the Film Academy, CIMA, and the Catalonia Guild of Film Businessmen.
During the commission’s first meeting, it was suggested that several working groups be formed to address three main areas: tax incentives, direct aid, and television channels’ investment in cinema.
The commission’s objective is to reach an agreement on a new model by the end of spring - beginning of summer 2013, although later this will have to be reviewed by Parliament. The next meeting is planned for February 6, next year.