ArteKino Classics / European Film Factory

For its penultimate day, the MIFC 2022 organized a discussion, moderated by Claire Brunel of the Wim Wenders Foundation, between the two European initiatives, designed to facilitate access to films and develop education in European works.

Lucie Guérin opened the debate, presenting the European Film Factory platform for which she is in charge of, and its educational aspect. Launched in 2020, this initiative aims to introduce young Europeans to heritage cinema and to give teachers the keys to initiate film education. Funded by MEDIA of Europe Creative and developed by the French Institute with Arte Education and the European School Net of Brussels, the platform is available in eight languages and proposed in 38 countries, targeting territories without film education, where the European Film Factory is very useful. It provides access to a catalog of European films and educational tools and explanations, operated through non-commercial, educational and non-exclusive rights. The proposed titles can also be acquired through the national archives of the countries where the platform is available. In addition, Lucie Guérin specifies that the materials produced for the European Film Factory can be used for theatrical screenings, emphasizing the important work of creating material that this initiative requires: she mentions in particular the question of subtitles, which are produced in-house if they cannot be recovered.

Claudia Tronnier, director of cinema and fiction at Arte, then explained the work of ArteKino Classics, initiated between the Berlinale and the Cannes Film Festival last year. Available in six languages, the titles of the collection are chosen to try to "speak of today, to propose new cinematographic languages" and to put forward numerous female directors and little-known films. Not always corresponding to the cinematographic canons to which each culture is accustomed, they offer a privileged window on other ways of making cinema, while sharing the culture of the countries represented. These titles come from the catalog of the Association of European Film Libraries (ACE) or are acquired by negotiating their rights with the rights holders. An acquisition facilitated if the titles have been broadcast on television. 

The ACE is present in the panel, represented by Paulina Reizi, coordinator of A Season of Classic Films for the association. She promotes the work of the archives of all the member countries of the ACE, helping to restore and distribute them through free screenings, at least one of which is mandatory to participate in the initiative. However, working with archives is not easy, unless they hold the rights to the films concerned by the association. Working with a grant from Europe Creative, the ACE associates with several other initiatives to have other windows of diffusion. A synergy exists with ArteKino. 

Boglárka Nagy ends this round table discussion by describing the actions of the CICAE, of which she is the general delegate, and in particular their European Cinema Art Day. Opening its 7th edition on November 13th this year, this day allows the promotion of art house cinema all over Europe and is organized within the framework of educational actions of the CICAE on the European cinematographic heritage. It is supported by several directors and filmmakers like Lukas Dhont or Joachim Trier. In addition, Boglárka Nagy spoke about streaming and the circulation of films in theatres, explaining that there is a strong correlation between the success of films in theatres and the consumption of cinema online: thanks to results provided by Switzerland, it appears that 20% of the films available on platforms had been launched in theatres, and represented 80% of the films seen in streaming.

To conclude this discussion, Claire Brunel asked the panelists what improvements were needed to make such partnerships last. For Boglárka Nagy, the first step would be to develop a database to facilitate the search for film rights. For the General Delegate of the CICAE, it would also be interesting to think about collaborative practices for curation. For Lucie Guérin, it is important that the school integrates more cinema in its pedagogy, the diffusion of the heritage passing by education, but also that the European Commission mobilizes itself for a pan-European diffusion of classic films. Finally, for Claudia Tronnier it is necessary to find ambassadors to make the initiatives presented here more known and identified in more countries.

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