Big names debate decline of local cinema audiences

Newsroom 18/12/2007 | 16:44

Romanians go to the cinema less than once a year and this number has been progressively dropping. In 2006, 2.7 million cinema tickets were sold, which means 4.6 percent less than in 2005, which contradicts the overall European tendency of going to the cinema more. 926 million tickets were sold in Europe which marks an increase of 3.6 percent compared to 2005. The cost of a ticket in Romania amounts to EUR 5-7 while in Europe it costs EUR 7.
This was the premise of a discussion on the disastrous state of the Romanian cinema system that involved Palme d'Or winner and more recently Golden Globe nominee Cristian Mungiu, the director and former manager of the national television Tudor Giurgiu, documentary maker Alexandru Solomon, general secretary from the Ministry of Culture Virgil Nitulescu and Jakub Duszynski, director of acquisitions in Gutek Film Poland, who came to share his experience concerning the steps that Poland, which was roughly in the same situation, took to improve the state of its cinema.
Thus, in 2005, the Polish parliament voted a new cinematography law which founded a new institution- The Polish Film Institute. Moreover, this law stipulated that public television, private channels, cable operators, distributors and those who exploit cinemas are compelled to pay to the institute a fee of 1.5 percent from the revenues generated by publicity and the distribution and exploitation of movies. Thus, from several million euro a year, the Polish Film Institute could administer an annual budget of EUR 25,000,000, said Duszynski. Another solution would be for the institutions in charge to offer priority to that side of culture which has registered the highest success lately, in this case the cinema, said Giurgiu in an intervention.

Otilia Haraga

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