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INDUSTRY Sweden

New report delineates overhaul of film policy

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In its shadow report The Future Policy and Strategy for Sweden's Film Sector, commissioned by the Swedish Film Producers Association and regional film fund Film i Väst, the UK consultancy company Olsberg/SPI made ten recommendations, including a change of name for the Swedish Film Institute (SFI) and a new film law.

Last Tuesday, the SFI’s cinema Mauritz was packed with industry representatives who came to hear Jonathan Olsberg present his highly anticipated report, and personal recommendations on how to improve the state of the local film industry. The aim of the report was to lay the groundwork for discussions as the Swedish Film Agreement between the State and the film industry comes to an end in 2010.

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“The Film Agreement was at some point in time a good idea but it is also a conclusive argument that has led to Sweden’s absence today of an active film policy,” said Björn Rosengren, head of the Swedish Producers’ Association. “We are thoroughly happy with the report. It has a high vision and a focus that was lacking in our discussions about the future of Swedish film. Even the international dimension of the report is important for our continued work.”

Some of the key recommendations made by Olsberg/SPI:

• Replace the voluntary Film Agreement with a new film law, the “Film Statute”
• Create Screen Sweden, a re-branded Swedish Film Institute, and reinforce its strategic role
• Replace the current cinema levy with a new system that secures similar funding from all distribution formats, including online
• Replace the existing Public Related box office support with an automatic support for commercial films based on filmmakers' success
• Direct an enhanced level of Screen Sweden selective funding into those challenging films that might not otherwise secure automatic support
• Combat piracy and illegal downloading through a bolder series of enforced measures
• Address Scandinavian major Svensk Filmindustri’s screen monopoly.

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