“The Ministry of culture of the Russian Federation has promised that the law on cinematography does not affect small festivals

– Amendments to the law on support of cinematography will not create problems for the retrospective screenings and film festivals that can create a jury not to hold the competition, if not going to international status, declare in the Ministry of culture of the Russian Federation.

“The amendments do not create problems for the retrospective film festivals in which films of the past years and, as a rule, already has a distribution certificate”, – stated in the message of the Ministry released on Wednesday.

Work on the amendments, said the culture revealed the presence of “parallel rent” movies that exists along with legal rental, including receiving rental certificates. “This phenomenon is widespread, as evidenced by the comments of the representatives of the film industry, critics of the amendments to the law”, – stated in the message.

So, according to the Agency, “making use of the available exemption, and the absence in the current edition of the law the concept of “film festival” and requirements, there are several dozen events, which call themselves international film festivals and showing films without rental licenses”. “Some of them last for six months or more. Cases are known when the film festival is showing a certain set of films, which moved the country from one settlement to another. While entrance fees are often charged,” – said in the Ministry of culture.

“In fact, the aforementioned activities constitute a public demonstration of films and should be receiving rental certificates as under current law, and in accordance with the amendments to it”, – concluded the Agency.

The Ministry stressed that “to obtain the rental license is simple: you must pay a state fee of 3.5 thousand rubles, to apply to the Ministry of culture and provide the disc with the movie. The rental license shall be issued within ten working days (in practice, three to five days)”. In addition, a copy of the domestic film, shot in Russia or abroad, as well as film co-production (with participation of Russia) in order to preserve the cultural heritage of the Russian Federation it is necessary to transfer for permanent storage to the state film Fund, the Ministry added.

However, added there, for the first time at legislative level the concept of “film festival” is an event to show specially selected movies performed in accordance with regulations approved by the festival organizer. “The festival may have of the jury and the competition program, and may not be”, – emphasized in the Ministry of culture.

According to the amendments, recalled there, be exempted from receiving rental certificates will be an international festival with a competitive program, consisting of the jury evaluated films, the total duration of which is not more than ten days; in which each film is no more than two times; included in the list of international film festivals, annually approved by the Ministry of culture.

Criteria for international film festivals and the formation of the list of international film festivals will be approved by the government of the Russian Federation, previously reported “Interfax” the press service of the Ministry. For example, the criteria is planned to be set: the presence in the festival programme, along with national films, films of foreign production of films or co-productions; the presence of the jury, along with Russian filmmakers, and foreign filmmakers.

“Thus, it should be noted that the amendments to the law on support of the cinematography in no way infringe upon participants of the market, but rather create equal conditions for the display of foreign and national films, exclude the possibility of “parallel hire” and eliminate existing legislative ambiguities,” – concluded in the Ministry of culture.

The law on cinematography

The state Duma on July 26 voted in the third and final reading for amendments to the law “On state support of cinematography”. The Russian government is initiating amendments to the legislation, argued that “the organizers of the film festivals held in Russia are subject to penalties because the distribution certificate for such events may be missing from the films is not only foreign, but the majority of films of domestic production.”

The law introduces the concept of the festival as a “cultural and educational activities which is in accordance with the regulations (rules), approved by the organizers of this event is a screening of specially selected films and can have a competitive program, consisting of the estimate of the jury of the movies.” For the Ministry of culture establishes the authority for annual approval of the list held in the territory of the Russian Federation at international film festivals.

The law stipulates that the rental license will not be required when showing any film on terrestrial, cable, satellite TV. Shall enter into force 90 days after the date of its official publication.

The Federation Council at the final meeting of the spring session on July 28 approved the adoption of the act.

Meanwhile, the organizers of the independent film festivals, in which there is no contest, claim that after adoption of law their work will be under threat, as according to formal criteria, they may not get approved by the Ministry of culture’s list of festivals, therefore, they will not be allowed to show pictures without a distribution certificate. In particular, this claim of the organizers of the Beat Film Festival Beat Weekend, as well as the project Inoekino dealing with retrospectives of the classics of world cinema.

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