Europese cinema op het wereldtoneel (en)
EU film support is set to go global after MEPs approved today a €15 million funding package to boost worldwide competitiveness of the European audiovisual industry and foster collaboration with third countries. The programme was inspired by pilot projects initiated by the European Parliament in 2008 and 2009. The legislative report was adopted with 484 votes in favour, 16 against and 25 abstentions.
The MEDIA MUNDUS programme for 2011 - 2013 will:
· Strengthen international professional collaboration, through the funding of training programmes and exchange scholarships;
· Contribute to co-productions between EU and third-country film companies by facilitating access to commercial financing and supporting script development and professional networking;
· Improve transnational film distribution through financial support for printing, subtitling, advertising, as well as cinema theatres and broadcasters.
Cultural diversity and business opportunities
MEDIA MUNDUS is expected to create new business opportunities and jobs for audiovisual professionals in Europe and around the world. The programme also aims to put European culture on the world scene and to increase consumer choice, as more European programmes will be made available on foreign markets.
Speaking before the vote today, rapporteur Ruth HIERONYMI (EPP-ED, DE) said: "Cultural works should not just be treated as commercial goods; they are a vector of a common European identity. MEDIA MUNDUS responds to the need of supporting our film industry as a motor of intercultural dialogue in a time of globalisation of markets and new technologies".
"MEDIA MUNDUS helps give Europe a face and project the idea of a European dream. The American dream has been projected for decades through film. It is time for us Europeans to do the same" said Doris PACK (DE) for the EPP-ED group.
Christa PRETS (PES, AT) remarked that "Slumdog Millionaire is the proof that film makers from around the world can work successfully across borders", adding that "the MEDIA MUNDUS funding programmes will allow professionals to keep up to date with the technological changes that are so radically affecting the industry"
Commissioner Viviane REDING told MEPs: "MEDIA MUNDUS is about creating business opportunities and jobs, but it is above all about supporting cultural diversity."
A global response to a global market
International demand for audiovisual content has grown steadily these last years, stimulated by the development of new technologies and the emergence of new markets in Asia and Latin America.
The European Parliament adopted the Media International Preparatory Plan in the EU's 2008 budget: €2 million were allocated to 18 international projects, ranging from joint training programmes for Indian and Italian documentary makers, to marketing and promotion workshops for French and Moroccan film producers, and financial support for a global network of cinemas.
At the 2009 Cannes Film festival, Gilles Jacob (President of the Cannes Festival) Jose-Manuel Barroso, Viviane Reding and EU ministers in charge of audiovisual matters asked the Commission to put forward a proposal to pursue the initiative: the result is MEDIA MUNDUS.
Training in new technologies, in order to meet new market trends, should in particular be provided for in the programme, Parliament insisted. New distribution platforms such as VOD, IPTV and Web TV as well as new production and post-production technologies need to be focused on.
The current MEDIA 2007 programme, which provides €755 million to the EU's film industry for the 2007 - 2013 period, has funded award-winning films such as Slumdog Millionaire (UK), Gomorra (Italy), La Vie en Rose (France).