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Vajna promises swift action on Hungarian film crisis

Newly appointed Hungarian Film Commissioner Andy Vajna says Hungary won’t duck its co-production obligations despite the current crisis in the local film industry.

Hungarian-born Hollywood producer Vajna the packed audience at the Hungarian Institute in Berlin: “One of my main purposes in coming here was to reassure those coproducers throughout Europe that we are taking this thing very seriously,” Vajna said. “We are going to be analysing all the promises that have been made over the next two weeks to see what ones we can fulfil – and we are going to act quickly, even on the ones that we know that we can’t.”
 
In a statement, the Government acknowledged yesterday that international coproduction remains “a high priority.”

Vajna has set himself a deadline of two to three months to come up with a proposal a new public Hungarian film organisation. “I am hoping that in the next 60 days I can put a proposal in front of the Government that will be approved and then I can get the industry back on its feet.”

“All these people here – the producers and directors – are impatient. They want to go to work,” Vajna told his audience.

The Government issued a statement yesterday that revealed a long-term strategy was now in place “that will serve the cause of the Hungarian film industry more effectively, economically and professionally.” The Government said “new long-term concept…will be worked out shortly.”

The Hungarian industry has all but ground to a halt in recent months, and the Hungarian Film Week usually held this month has been cancelled.
 
The statement from the Hungarian Ministry of Public Administration and Justice revealed that film body the Hungarian Motion Picture Fund was “on the verge ofcollapse” after “irresponsible handling.”

“The system is bankrupt,” Vajna declared. “We need to figure out how to solve it.”

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