MEDIA head Silver defends industry consultation
Silver dismissed the charge that industry was “not part of the process” in planning the new MEDIA programme.
Aviva Silver, Head of the MEDIA and Media Literacy Unit at the European Commission. has dismissed the charge that industry was “not part of the process” in planning the new MEDIA programme.
Silver said she was “amazed” by suggestions aired earlier this month that European producers were not being consulted as the future is plotted for the MEDIA Programme.
“Not only did we meet with the European Producers Club (EPC) in Berlin…but they also replied to our consultation and were present at our hearing,” Silver commented.
Silver was speaking in Cannes, where the EU’s MEDIA programme has been celebrating its 20th anniversary.
Earlier this spring, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso stated that he would try to “reinforce” the MEDIA Programme and would maintain it. His remarks came in the wake of widespread speculation that MEDIA might be scrapped.
Barroso’s message was echoed by Mrs Androulla Vassilliou, the European Commissioner for Culture, when she was in Cannes earlier this week.
“I think it’s a great victory for the (European film) industry who made it very clear how attached they were to MEDIA,” Silver commented. Silver also flagged up such new initiatives as the MEDIA Production Guarantee Fund, worth €8 million over four years, intended to bring more banks into the film sector. The idea behind the initiative is to facilitate access to bank loans for independent European film producers by guaranteeing the loans granted for securing the cashflow of their productions. “We’re hoping to build on it (the Fund) significantly for the new programme,” Silver said. “It’s very important that it has time to run now and we get some experience from it.”
MEDIA 2007, the most recent programme running from 2007 to 2013, is worth €755 million.