FERA welcomes last week’s approval of the Creative Europe programme by the European Parliament, paving the way for its entry into force with a budget almost doubled compared to its previous edition. We warmly thank all the MEPs and their teams who made this possible through steadfast determination over several years, two mandates and a worldwide pandemic.
Cultural and creative sectors have been severly hit by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis and local audiovisual creation, production, promotion, distribution and cinema exhibition infrastructures are still under a significant amount of pressure. In such challenging times, swift and efficient implementation of the new MEDIA programme is urgently needed to provide continuity for local audiovisual ecosystems across Europe. Now that its legal basis is approved, we very much support the European Commission’s commitment to implement promptly year one of the MEDIA sub-programme.
For decades, MEDIA has provided essential leverage for countries with various audiovisual production capacity to thrive, and boosting successful support schemes aiming at promoting cultural diversity in our sector has never been so necessary. We therefore call on the Commission to engage early in a constructive dialogue with stakeholders to take stock of our sector’s new cultural and industrial landscape in developing next year’s work programme.
European filmmakers stand ready to help the EU Commission deliver as of 2022 on several key aspects of the new programme:
– The impact of the introduction of new schemes or modifications to existing ones must be cautiously assessed in line with the new Regulation, which states that “recent modernisation of the copyright framework should be taken into account across the Programme [such as Directive (EU) 2019/790’s aim to ensure fair remuneration of authors and performers]”. As an example, the new approach to documentary referred to in May 19th joint statement will affect documentary filmmakers whose situation is constantly deteriorating.
– The introduction of “support to networking activities for audiovisual professionals, including creators, and business-to-business exchanges to nurture and promote talents in the European audiovisual sector”: it will provide a much-needed level playing field between creators from the audiovisual sector and creators from other cultural sectors benefitting from support to network in the Culture strand, at a time of accelerated change in the audiovisual industry.
– Support to “Training and mentoring activities to enhance the capacity of audiovisual professionals to adapt to new creative processes” should take into account the specific needs of directors in a changing industry in order for them to be able to build sustainable artistic and creative careers.
– The development of specific measures to contribute to a more balanced gender participation in the audiovisual sector including for directors.
– And last but not least, we support the EU Commission ongoing work to explore ways to support creators and nurture talent in the Pilot Action “Writing European”.
Photo by Marie Pierre Morel