Films produced in Europe have been deemed of a high quality by this island???s Minister of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, Ronald Jones.
Delivering remarks at Wednesday???s launch of the European Film Festival 2014 at the Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination (EBCCI), Mr. Jones applauded the European Delegation and the audience present for ???following a tradition of enjoying good European movies [with] good scripts, themes, plots, and characters???.
Acknowledging that he had viewed some of the productions, Mr. Jones said: ???In our nascent film industry, we need to see good movies and Europe does in fact produce some???
“There is always this very interesting slant ??? the subtleness of the language and the theme??? and you have to truly use your mind to follow the plot to see all of that.???
Stating that through movies a culture, language and a people were transported to the viewers, the Education Minister said: ???I want to see more work being done in the Caribbean. We know it costs money??? But it is important for us to follow good examples done by other people in other places.
“We have seen some movies done here. There are one or two that have brought you to tears in their own way and the Minister of Culture would tell you he is highly committed to this kind of exercise, this kind of work.???
Head of the European Union Delegation, Ambassador Mikael Barfod, lauded the partnership with the EBCCI and said the festival would offer a taste of some recent movies.
???I think, upon all standards including popularity, box office success, critics acclaim or film awards, these films should really appeal to all audiences outside the European continent. This includes the Caribbean, which has so many ties with Europe that we all know about,??? he declared.
The Ambassador also noted that more appreciation of European films could come via showing them in Barbadian schools.
Furthermore, he said: ???We also hope that the film festival would encourage those involved in the fledgling film industry, locally, to persevere with their dreams. I want to urge them to try to forge international linkages, since film production is costly and a somewhat risky enterprise.???
Patrons also heard of the European Union???s (EU) contribution to Barbados, as Ambassador Barfod noted that two calls for proposals within the framework of the African Caribbean and Pacific Cultures Plus programme, totalling 23 million Euros had been launched.
These were a call in 2011 dealing with cinemas and the audio visual sectors, and another in 2012 that addressed cultural industries.
???I am particularly proud to inform you that among the second call for proposals was a project from Barbados entitled: The 3D Distribution Project, whereby Caribbean Tales Worldwide Distribution Inc. (Barbados) received 274,000 Euros for the development and distribution of audio visual products in the Caribbean.
“In particular, it includes acquisition of international distribution rights for more than 400 films; the creation of a digital platform for video-on-demand; broadcasting films on television channels and a marketing campaign.
The overall aim is to strengthen the market access of these products at national, regional and international levels,??? the Ambassador said. Thirteen films, ranging from comedy to drama, romance and fantasy, from ten European countries will be shown during this year???s festival, which runs until November 9.