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Classic movies and Youtube, film education and multimedia experience at the first cinema conference in Athens

22 November 2010 / 17:11:41  GRReporter
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Filmmakers in the Mist are considering establishing an experimental laboratory of cinema art studies. Unofficially, their proposal is the laboratory to become the foundations for the establishment of Film Arts School as there is no such in Greece. According to them, it is enough for a start to make a single three-year training program for 12 students the selection procedure for which will be very thorough. Their training and laboratory courses will be free and scholarships will be awarded for the poor. After the first students graduate it will be assessed whether the program is successful and whether it will continue.  

These days the First International Conference of the Hellenic Film Academy (19-21 November) was held in Athens where were presented different perspectives relating to The Importance of Audiovisual Education Cinema Speaking with the support of the Onassis Foundation. "The state should take the responsibility for the education of filmmakers but this is not mentioned in the new draft on cinema," said the Film Academy’s Chairman Tassos Boulmetis. As it became clear from the presentation of Panagiotis Dendramis, the first university degree in film making was launched in Greece in 2004 in the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. There are three state departments in Greece for cinema studies in addition to the two faculties of mass media communications in Athens and Thessaloniki, where lectures on film theory and documentary filmmaking are read.

The aim of the Conference, according to the organizers, is to find the meaning of multi media culture of a society in crisis, as the Greek one at the moment. In their opinion, the importance lies in the function of cinema as a means of mobilization and the relationship of media literacy with the ability for active participation of citizens in a democratic country. "On the one hand, a film can ‘open your eyes’, change your perception of the world and, secondly, the knowledge to ‘read’ multi media language makes you more resistant to different types of propaganda," they said. "We believe there is a need to exercise our eyes, i.e. the way we perceive and understand the world."

Europe produces 900 feature films every year but they often do not reach the audience they are intended to and remain largely unknown both in the world and in Europe, noted Henning Camre, director of the European think-tank organization for films and film policy. He said government policy should help to realize a variety of films that reflect the variety of artistic and cultural means of expression and to bring these films to their audience. To enable new generations to decode the language of cinema films need to be made by educated filmmakers, film classes are needed at schools as well as rich film libraries, but also trained teachers who can introduce students to film art.
 
"While there is no education on the multi-media language principles communications receiver will not be able to decode all the elements and to understand how they function in everyday life with their numerous consequences," said the writer Kleantis Danopoulos. "Film language is most common in the world at a time when all talk about globalization. Given that over 5 billion people worldwide watch for half an hour everyday multimedia products that use (to the extent of abuse) the language of cinema, it is clear that the language that was created through the development of cinema is the lingua franca of modern civilization," explained Mr. Danopoulos.

The transformation of the production, distribution and consumption equipment on its part changed the way of multimedia productions watching. Every one has access to materials - films and other visual products, they are easy to make and easy to spread (via Youtube), but this raises some questions associated with serious educational challenges, said in his presentation Dimitris Eleftheriotis, lecturer at Glasgow University. He said there is a shift of emphasis from some values to others and noted that university students are no longer romantic cinema fans that made film noir and Douglas Cirque fetish but a generation that uploads short films online and spends hours to look similar short films. The ordinary has replaced the exceptional in multimedia experience. It is very important how we would handle this when reading lectures. There is no doubt that there are many opportunities revealed. A new generation of students shows awareness and technical knowledge of media conventions and techniques, and young filmmakers are able to make films for a small budget but of a big impact, said Mr. Eleftheriotis.

Antoinette Angelidi said about the creative process that the purpose of film education is to trigger "the young artist’s subconscious in order to be able to unite around the core of a personal, artistic look. So, as much culture as possible should be absorbed. And only what is loved deeply should be held. Because personal perspective, but also collective experience are woven into what we call personal style... to use restrictions as a spring and turn disadvantages into advantages. With passion, dedication and inner discipline. To experiment, because life is too short to obey what is implied."

The Minister of Culture Pavlos Geroulanos made a speech at the opening of the Conference and stressed the importance of the Film Academy as a representative of the filmmakers with which the state could enter into dialogue. The event was attended by the famous director Costas Gavras.

 MN

Tags: NewsFilm conferenceEducationClassic movieYoutubeProductionsFilm libraryDigital cinema
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