Countering the imbalances in European production
Change the proportions of films produced by the different European countries, continue to support professional training and boost international cooperation by increasing links between the European film industry and those of third countries: these are a few of the ideas and propositions put forward at the debate organised on September 10 by the civic-minded initiative A Soul for Europe at the European Culture Congress in Wroclaw.
"As the statistics show, the MEDIA Programme is a success: the European Union countries have produced 1,200 films, more than the United States and Asian countries", pointed out Jan Truszczynski, the European Commission’s Director General for Education, Training, Culture and Youth.
He continued: "We obviously also have our weaknesses: most of our markets are small. British, French, German, Italian and Spanish films represent more than 60% of European production compared to only 15% for the dozen most recent EU member countries. Therefore we must support the distribution of films from these limited markets (...)”
“It is also important, still in terms of investment in distribution, to continue to support professional training, which brings an added value with the rise in co-productions. And a co-production always means more chances of international distribution. Finally, it is also important to expand the network of contacts and it is with this aim in mind that the MEDIA Mundus Programme was set up."
"The problem lies in what European cinema shows us of today," commented Hungarian director Istvan Szabo. "American films always convey American culture, while European cinema (we see this in festival selections) is artificial. We should explore the face of Europe; learn about unemployment, corruption, migrations, etc… European films must paint our portrait and above all represent our right to be portrayed."
(Translated from French)
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