International Edition No. 18 - year 2 - 28 March 2007


Today, 28 March 2007, sees the start of the new edition of “DigiTraining Plus: New Technologies for European Cinemas”, the course run by MEDIA Salles, with the support of the European Union and the Italian Government, for professional figures in the cinema industry all over Europe.

To read the course programme, please click here.

Launched in 2004, this is the only initiative that the European Union’s MEDIA Programme offers for training on digital technologies specifically applied to movie theatres. Once again this year, Barco, leading European producers of digital projectors, will be hosting the course in their Kuurne headquarters, in Belgium.
Sixteen countries are represented on the course, which will end on Sunday, 1st April.
Amongst the main topics are an analysis of the present position of digital cinema and its prospects, as well as an evaluation of the most widespread business models. In this connection, Jens Rykær, President of MEDIA Salles, commented: “this course is born of the conviction that theatres should not experience the digital transition passively, nor feel that they are besieged by the expansion of the new technologies. It is the latter that should be at the service of the cinema. It is therefore impossible for there to be a single business model valid in all situations, and it is the exhibitor who must choose”. This is the direction taken in the talk by Thierry Henkinet, who, on the basis of his past experience with Éclair Digital Cinemas, one of the first companies to have signed Virtual Print Fee deals for Europe with US Studios, explained that this model must be adapted to the demands of a market with specific characteristics like Europe’s. The need to offer customized business solutions to the different types of theatres and exhibition companies was also confirmed by Barco, in the words of Nico Vernieuwe, Vice President of Events and Digital Cinema, and Glenn Wastyn, Market Director Digital Cinema, during a presentation which highlighted the similarities and distinctions between the different world markets involved in digital transition. The day came to an end with a first opportunity for the course participants who have shared their expectations and experiences to compare notes. Awareness of the enormous impact of this technological innovation is expressed in the words of Matthieu Bakolas, a Belgian exhibitor taking part in the course: “digital technology announces a revolution in the film industry. Such a technological evolution will indeed have a direct influence on all cinema professions, from directors to cinema owners”.

MEDIA Salles, a project operating within the framework of the European Union's MEDIA Programme, with the support of the Italian Government, fosters theatrical distribution of European audiovisual products, both by high profile campaigns involving Europe's cinema exhibitors and by initiatives to raise the visibility of European productions with industry players and potential audiences, creating specialized information channels on a global scale. Thus the current initiatives from MEDIA Salles dovetail in a program with a triple focus – training, promotion and information – and maximum combined effect.

MEDIA Salles
Via Soperga, 2 – I-20127 Milan
Tel.: +39.02.66984405 – Fax: +39.02.6691574