Country Focus: Belgium
A new platform for the diffusion of Flemish films
by Aurore Engelen
- The Union of Flemish Film Producers (VFPB) and the website UniversCine.be, in collaboration with the VAF and Flanders Doc, have launched a new diffusion platform for Flemish films, making accessible fictions and documentaries, shorts and features, for paying download or streaming online. The films on offer go back to 1945!
Digital platforms for the rental of VoD films are trendy in Belgium, which is in the top 5 of European countries that offer the most VoD services. But until now, it was not easy finding Flemish films, the offer being extremely widespread. This new structure will therefore give access to big commercial successes (The Alzheimer Case [+see also:
film profile] and Bullhead [+see also:
interview: Bart Van Langendonck
interview: Michaël R. Roskam
film profile]) but also author films (such as the recent Kid [+see also:
film profile] and The Fifth Season [+see also:
interview: Jessica Woodworth
film profile]), as well as formats not released in theatres, an occasion for example to discover the incredible documentary Grande Hotel.
Beyond the possibility of streaming and downloading films, the platform also offers membership formulas, a sort of prepaid card giving access to 5 to 20 films. The platform is hosted on the website www.vlaamsefilm.be, and activated by UniversCine, the reference VoD site in Belgium.
UniversCine was launched in 2008 at the initiative of 36 independent distributors and producers. The model is taken from the original French website, which appeared in the early 2000’s. UniversCine Belgium handles both its own website for rentals as well as the distribution of content for other Belgian suppliers and actors within the VoD sector such as Belgacom, Telenet, iTunes, Voo, etc. UniversCine is also part of EuroVoD, a European network of 15 VoD platforms, which owns a catalogue of over 7000 films and work with 650 European distributors and producers.