How Will Films and Filmmakers Will Receive Funding Post Pandemic?

As for the films, I don’t think the industry and the filmmakers will want to give up on physical screenings.

How Will Films and Filmmakers Will Receive Funding Post Pandemic?

Arts and Culture is a way to connect to each other, build bridges to bring us together when it was not possible to do it physically.” – Lili Hinstin

Locarno Film Festival is an annual film festival held every August in Locarno, Switzerland.  Founded in 1946, it is one of the longest-running film festivals, and is also a prestigious platform for art house films. Filmmakers like John Waters (recipient of the Pardo d’Onore) and Albert Serra have been featured at the Festival as well as the Parasite duo, Song Kang-ho (who received the Excellency Award at the Festival last year) along with Academy Award Winner Bong Joon-ho.

The Global Search for Education is pleased to welcome the Festival’s Artistic Director, Lili Hinstin.

“Arts and Culture is a way to connect to each other, build bridges to bring us together when it was not possible to do it physically.”  – Lili Hinstin 

Lili, it’s been quite a year for the global film industry.  Do you believe there will be a “new normal” post pandemic for audiences to screen movies?  

As everywhere in the world, in Switzerland too the coronavirus crisis had a great impact, leading many film productions to be put on hold and movie theaters to close their doors, as well as festivals who had to cancel their edition or decide to go online. Of course, experiencing a film in a theater is irreplaceable, and I can’t wait to go back to that, but as we are slowly getting out of the lockdown, we will have to observe new sanitary measures in order to be able to enjoy this experience safely. 

“Art is also a way to “nourish” ourselves and grow to a new awareness.” – Lili Hinstin 

In these turbulent times, artists globally have brought us together.  What is happening in Switzerland in terms of arts funding moving forward? 

The global recession has impacted arts funding all over the world. In Switzerland, however, the Federal Council has decided to adopt a package of measures to support culture in the country, and that includes the cinema sector as well. 

Having said that, it is clear that the film industry, even in Switzerland, is suffering and will suffer serious consequences linked to the pandemic and the economic crisis. This is one of the reasons why we decided to launch “The Films After Tomorrow” for this upcoming edition. This initiative aims to help filmmakers who had their project put on hold because of the pandemic. 10 international and 10 Swiss projects will be selected, and two juries composed of three renowned directors will award a 70,000 CHF prize for each international and swiss selection that will be used to finish the films. During the lockdown, everyone had the chance of rediscovering the importance of arts and culture in our everyday life.  Arts and Culture is a way to connect to each other, build bridges to bring us together when it was not possible to do it physically.  Art is also a way to “nourish” ourselves and grow to a new awareness. Now more than ever, we need to support the arts by all means.

 “As we have already seen and are still witnessing, many film festivals have had to cancel or go online, and probably this coexistence of online platforms and physical screenings for presenting films will be something that will have to be taken into account for the upcoming years.” – Lili Hinstin 

Technology has changed how we connect as a society and also how we experience art and culture.  What are your predictions for filmmakers and film festivals for the next 5 years?

As we have already seen and are still witnessing, many film festivals have had to cancel or go online, and probably this coexistence of online platforms and physical screenings for presenting films will be something that will have to be taken into account for the upcoming years. This will lead also to a new flexibility in the media release chronology, a law that regulates media timescale that is strictly respected in Europe, and especially in France. The festivals that already went online discovered that especially the conversations or master classes were very well attended, and I guess the availability of this kind of content will be proposed online systematically in the upcoming years. As for the films, I don’t think the industry and the filmmakers will want to give up on physical screenings.

(All photos are courtesy of Locarno Film Festival ©Locarno Film Festival, 2019)
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