Latvia marks 100th anniversary with increased film funding

Latvia marks 100th anniversary with increased film funding
Scene from Latvian feature Mellow Mud (2016, Renārs Vimba) (Image: MELLOW MUD (Marzenia) - TRAILER | KWT 2016 / Kino w Trampkach / Youtube)

20 May 2016

Latvia is celebrating its centennial in 2018 with 16 feature-length films, funded by an increased film budget worth US$8.5 million.

An independent jury have selected 16 projects out of 31 submissions to be funded by the film budget, provided by the National Film Centre of Latvia. Their selection reportedly aims to showcase a wide range of filmmaking talent and genres from Latvia.

It is expected that the 16 selected projects, which comprise six features, two animation films and eight documentaries, will go into production later this year and premiere in the centenary year.

“Our aim was to select artistically high-quality films of diverse genres and significant for society by examining Latvia’s national identity and history,” said director of the National Film Centre, Dita Rietuma.

This development is accompanied by an increase in the budget for cash rebate run by the National Film Centre, which will increase from US$724,000 to US$1.34m.

Local experts have suggested that the country’s time hosting the European Film Awards last year has raised awareness of the film industry with Latvian officials and politicians, hence the increase in funding for films.

“Our EFA events also helped establish the Latvian industry as being perceived as part of European film culture,” said Ms Rietuma, “As a result, it made Latvia’s politicians more aware of the needs of our film industry.”

Source: Screen Daily