Magazine article Screen International

Bela Tarr: Hungarian Film Fund 'Unacceptable and Illegitimate'

Magazine article Screen International

Bela Tarr: Hungarian Film Fund 'Unacceptable and Illegitimate'

Article excerpt

Hungarian director [pictured] responds to confirmation that the Film Fund - run by Andy Vajna - was to take over the property of the Motion Picture Public Foundation of Hungary.The rift between the old guard of Hungarian cinema led by auteur Bela Tarr and the new Film Fund headed by Andy Vajna has widened yet further. In his capacity as President of the Hungarian Filmmakers' Association, Tarr yesterday issued a furious statement, lambasting the Fund's behaviour as "unacceptable and illegitimate".Tarr's statement came as it was finally confirmed that the Film Fund was to take over the property of the Motion Picture Public Foundation of Hungary (MMKA) - including film studios, buildings, real estates and the Hungarian Film Laboratory.The Court of Hungary has now approved this measure."The approval of this agreement means that the operation of the Motion Picture Foundation established twenty years ago by the Hungarian film professionals, has become impossible and winds up forever the self-governance of our profession," Tarr stated.As he made very clear in earlier public statements and interviews, Tarr bitterly resents what he perceives as the monopolistic behaviour of the Fund under Vajna."We refuse to accept the idea that a single-channel grant system replace what has so far been a multi-channel system of subsidies or that a mechanism of centralized distribution of funds be exercised instead of the earlier, professional self-governance based on a broad consensus and reflecting a diversity of tastes," he said today, echoing comments he has made several times in the past.Vajna himself has again utterly refuted Tarr's accusations. "Let's straighten out Bela Tarr's misstatements. He has been issuing these fantastic statements that make no sense at all and are just rhetoric," Vajna commented. "He is saying the same thing now that he said a year ago and none of it makes any sense."The Film Fund boss added that the Fund had "cleaned up the debts" left by the MMKA as well as "the entire industry's debts to each other."Vajna said that the Fund had paid approximately [euro]25m ($31m) on behalf of the MMKA to "clean up the industry. Therefore, the MMKA owes us this money. …

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