Film fever for arthouse exhibitors in Germany
by Birgit Heidsiek
- Over 1,000 industry representatives are attending Germany’s Filmkunstmesse in Leipzig
The 14th Filmkunstmesse Leipzig, which kicks off with the award-winning drama Mommy by Xavier Dolan, is the biggest arthouse event for exhibitors in Europe. Altogether, 60 new titles are being presented to around 1,000 industry representatives in Leipzig. Among these films are festival highlights from Berlin and Cannes, such as Calvary [+see also:
interview: John Michael McDonagh
film profile] by John Michael McDonagh, Clouds of Sils Maria [+see also:
interview: Charles Gillibert
interview: Olivier Assayas
film profile] by Olivier Assayas, Timbuktu [+see also:
film profile] by Abderrahmane Sissako and the Belgian comedy-drama Brasserie Romantiek [+see also:
film profile] by Joël Vanhoebrouck.
The future of arthouse cinema is an issue that will be discussed at several seminars and workshops during the five-day event. While a great many young people want to produce films, arthouse cinemas are complaining about a lack of newcomers. Furthermore, the ongoing process of digitisation is presenting a serious challenge for the movie theatres. Online ticketing, e-delivery and the process of removing barriers for people with impairments or disabilities mean that new systems and investments are required.
But there is also some good news for the independent exhibitors: only a few days before the start of the arthouse event, VPF Hub, the virtual print fee model for independent cinemas in Germany, announced that they have signed a deal with 20th Century Fox Germany. From now on, the major distributor will support the digitisation of independent cinemas in Germany. So far, VPF Hub has collected about €6 million from distributors, and several cinemas have already paid off their investment.
An overview of the current situation for Germany’s arthouse cinemas will be given by the Federal Film Board (FFA), which is launching a new report with facts, figures and perspectives. The presentation will be moderated by AG Kino – Gilde chairman Christian Bräuer.