As you are certainly aware, screenwriters in Europe tend to be conspicuously absent from the limelight, sometimes so generously pointed at the film and TV industry. Indeed, the focus of the media is generally the stars and the directors and the focus of European policy when it comes to film and TV is firmly on the producers.
One of the most positive things to evolve within the realm of the European filmmaking community in recent times is The European Film Academy, founded in 1988 to promote European film culture.
As you can see on their website, europeanfilmacademy.org, the EFA initiates and participates in a series of activities every year, “…dealing with film politics as well as economic, artistic, and training aspects. The programme includes conferences, seminars and workshops, and a common goal is to build a bridge between creativity and the industry. These activities culminate in the annual presentation of the European Film Awards.”
The EFA now has 1800 members representing various aspects of the European film community. It has come to our attention that the number of screenwriters in the academy is symptomatically low. Judging from the members list on the website, only about 40 people who view themselves primarily or solely as screenwriters are members of the EFA. By counting all members who include the term “writer” or “screenwriter” in their description of their profession, the number rises considerably, but only to about 120.
We would like to use this opportunity to encourage our colleagues all around Europe to examine the possibilities of joining the EFA, in order to give the presence of screenwriters in Europe a highly justified boost.
Information on criteria (3 film credits) and cost (€180 pr. year) can be found on the EFA website. You will also need two patrons from the EFA membership to support your application – in case you cannot find these among your country’s members please let us know and we will help. It is worth mentioning, that as a member of the EFA you then receive a copy of almost all the European films nominated for the European Film Awards each year in every category, which is an invaluable way to keep abreast of what’s happening in European film.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
A message from Christina Kallas, President of the Federation of Screenwriters in Europe: