European Commission Backs Online Distribution

By Blaney, Martin | Screen International, May 22, 2014 | Go to article overview

European Commission Backs Online Distribution


Blaney, Martin, Screen International


[euro]5.5m will be made available for online distribution initiatives.

The EU's Creative Europe programme is to make [euro]5.5m available for online distribution initiatives for the circulation of European audiovisual works.

[euro]3.65m is to be earmarked for supporting European VOD services over 16 months from Sept 1, 2014 until Dec 31, 2015, which aims "at improving the presence, the visibility and the global audience of European audiovisual works."

The proposed actions will have to offer a European dimension, which means that the offered content must include audiovisual works from at least five countries participating in the MEDIA sub-programme representing at least five different official languages of the European Union.

[euro]500,000 is reserved for a second action line to assemble and deliver "digital packages facilitating the commercialisation of European audiovisual works on VoD services provided in countries where those works are not available".

The catalogues of "online ready" packages should focus on European audiovisual works with commercial potential. Each title of the catalogue needs to have been sold for theatrical or TV distribution in at least five countries participating in the MEDIA sub-programme.

[euro]1m is for projects experimenting with simultaneous or quasi-simultaneous releases of European films on a wide range of distribution platforms (such as festivals, cinemas, DVD, VoD services and television channels) and in a number of European territories.

Each of the films in the multiplatform releases must be released in at least three countries participating in the MEDIA sub-programme, and the action should aim at developing new business models.

The second and third actions would be expected to last for 12 months from Jan 1, 2015.

UNIC opposes EC support for day and date releases

However, the European Commission's (EC) continuing support for day-and-day releases in cinemas and on VoD remains a bone of contention with European exhibitors.

The publication of the support programme for online distribution initiatives is unlikely to change their opinion. …

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