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THESSALONIKI 2022 Evia to become an international green cinema hub

Source; cineuropa.org

by Vassilis Economou

 – The Thessaloniki Film Festival’s initiative is aiming to rebuild and restore the island of Evia, which was devastated by last summer’s fires

The Evia Film Project is a new initiative instigated by the Thessaloniki Film Festival, and it has been incorporated in the rebuilding and restoration plan for the island of Evia, launched by the Greek Ministry of Culture and Sports. The initiative is part of the “Fotodotes” section of the specially designed programme of developmental projects planned and executed by the ministry, within the context of the wider ongoing redevelopment plan targeting the island of Evia, following last summer’s disastrous fires.

According to the original plan, the Evia Film Project, which is being organised with the support of the Central Greece region, places Evia in the spotlight of green cinema, thus kicking off the Thessaloniki International Film Festival’s array of “green” actions. The aim is to culturally reboot Evia through the creation of an international cinema hub, intended for the exchange of ideas and film market activities focused on the environment, the climate crisis and its disastrous repercussions. The programme sets out to highlight Evia as a global-scale hub for green cinema, offering filmmakers and producers from all over the world the chance to showcase their film projects for the first time.

The actions of the Evia Film Project span three different sections. Starting off with Agora, the project will bring scripts, film projects and works in progress from all over the world, showcased for the first time in Evia, and all aiming to find co-producers and investors that will allow them to reach a successful conclusion. Agora’s scripts, film projects and works in progress can fall into the categories of documentaries, fiction films or new media. Furthermore, workshops and master classes will be organised, delivered by top-notch professionals from the international film industry, as well as educational programmes aimed at filmmakers, university students, students in primary and secondary education, and indeed all art-loving and cinephilic citizens of Evia. At the same time, a series of screenings of iconic films of particular ecological interest will be on offer, including both time-honoured classics and movies produced more recently, which raise awareness, inform and urge action, bringing to light the repercussions of human actions.

The main goal of the festival’s new initiative is to function as a cinema think tank, intent on highlighting and promoting film projects that attempt to raise awareness of the calamitous effects of environmental destruction and climate change.

The Evia Film Project will take place on Evia in the summer of 2022, in locations and venues that will be announced shortly. In the coming days, the submission period for projects will open. It should be noted that the institution will be based on Evia, and the Thessaloniki Film Festival is joining forces with the Chalkida Documentary Festival, the Department of Digital Arts and Cinema of Psachna, the local administration, as well as all cultural institutions headquartered on Evia, to bring this initiative to fruition.