Magazine article Screen International

EFA Chair Agnieszka Holland Criticises "Lazy" European Cinema

Magazine article Screen International

EFA Chair Agnieszka Holland Criticises "Lazy" European Cinema

Article excerpt

Schory, Goodridge join EFA board.

Image: Agnieszka Holland

Source: Berlin Film Festival

In a wide-ranging keynote on the challenges facing Europe’s filmmakers in the current political climate, European Film Awards (EFA) chair person Agnieszka Holland yesterday had some critical observations about the state of European cinema.

¨When I watch European cinema of the last two decades, I have the impression that we have been lazy, that European cinema with all its qualities and talents, artistic freedom and institutional and state support, didn’t generate a real movement, intellectually or artistically,¨ she suggested.

¨We didn’t ask ourselves who we are, where we are, what we want to tell, whom we want to speak with, and what is our main aim when we are deciding to do our movies. And unfortunately the effect of this was the lack of interest in European cinema from the global general audience.¨

¨Our challenge is to open up to a wider audience but this can only work if we touch on subjects and the fears of the audience in a way that isn’t reactive or imitative, but provocative and inspiring,¨ Holland observed.

Looking at the situation in Eastern and Western Europe, she pointed out that ¨the really inspired and inspiring cinema comes from breaking the rules and not accepting the rule.¨

She suggested that EFA could set up a think thank to analyse and come up with solutions for the future of distribution and production of European cinema. ¨We have to open up to television and VoD, this is a reality we cannot ignore anymore because otherwise we’ll finish up like Kodak.¨

EFA board appoints members

Israel Film Fund’s executive director Katriel Schory and Mike Goodridge, artistic director of the International Film Festival & Awards Macao (IFFAM), are among six newly elected members of the EFA board for the next two years.

They are joined on the 19-person board by Polish producer Joanna Szymanska (Walking Spark), French composer Béatrice Thiriet (The Song Of Scorpions), Graziella Bildesheim of MAIA Workshops, and Icelandic director Baltasar Kormákur.

Meanwhile, chairperson Agnieszka Holland and deputy chairpersons Mike Downey and Antonio Saura were re-elected for another two years - 2018-2019 - as were producers Àngela Bosch Rius and Ada Solomon.

EFA President Wim Wenders was re-elected uncontested to the post for another five years from 2018-2022.

Producers - who make up 18% of the EFA’s 3,300-plus membership - are in the majority on the Academy’s board occupying 12 of the 19 seats. …

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