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Eduard Anatolyevich Pichugin

Eduard A. Pichugin, the general director of Lenfilm Studios.
He is a board member of the Union of Cinematographers in Russian Federation; President of "Kinoalliance", the National Association of the Cinema Professional Organizations; the board member of the Producers Guild of Russian Federation. He has been engaged in promoting movie presentations and building cinema theaters since 1999. He holds a degree as a Candidate of Economic Sciences, wrote and defended the thesis on “Cash Flow Management in the Cinema Industry” within the framework of his major – “Finance and Credit”. He is a founder of the federal movie theater chains "Kronverk Cinema" and "KINO CITY".

News

The All-Russian Forum – Kino Rossiyi 2020 (Russian Cinema 2020) opened its doors in Saint Petersburg

19/04/2011

The first event of the All-Russian Forum Kino Rossiyi 2020 – a conference concerning “Problems and Prospects of Development in the Russian Film Industry” – took place in Saint Petersburg on April 19, 2011.
The conference was organized and presented by the following institutions: the Committee for Culture at State Duma, the KINOCLUB: Culture, Education, and Communication project of the All-Russian political party, Yedynaya Rossiya, and the Saint Petersburg State University for Cinema and Television.

The primary goal of the All-Russian Forum is to consolidate the efforts of all the participants of the cinema industry in order to maintain long-term stable development of the Russian film industry by increasing the competitiveness of our national cinematography on the world market.
Before the conference, the participants went on an orientation trip to the Saint Petersburg State University of Cinema and Television. This university is destined to become one of the leaders in developing the domestic film industry. The Rector of the university, Aleksandr Yevmenov, acquainted visitors with the new challenges, facing the university, which had been discussed at by the State Council of Cinematography, and how they were to be implemented.

The conference was opened by Grigoriy Ivliev, Head of the Committee at the RF State Duma, who emphasized the relevance of the forum, and explained the resolutions approved by the Government Council of Cinematography, which met on February 1, 2011.

As I was the presenter, I talked about the idea of having the All-Russian Forum act as a public platform, responsible for uniting the efforts of all the participants of the domestic film industry

I also talked about the project - KINOCLUB: Culture, Education, and Communication initiated by the all-Russian political party, Yedynaya Rossiya, which is aimed at increasing the number of cinema theaters in the country. I mentioned that 20 projects are in operation today. It is planned that 50 cinema theaters will open annually. However, KINOCLUB is not just a cinema theater… it is also a cultural center, where you can find a modern art gallery, a cinema club, an auditorium, and an electronic library all under one roof.

Next, Viacheslav Telnov (Director of the Department of Cinematography at the RF Ministry of Culture), and Oleg Ivanov (President of the Movie Research Group) described the present-day situation of film distribution. The main problem here is the catastrophic shortage of screens, especially in small- and middle-sized cities. It is impossible for the film industry to get on its feet unless there is a considerable increase in the number of screens.

Aleksandr Rubin, (Kinoproject Company) reviewed technical innovations. Sergey Tolstikov (President of the Federal Fund for Social and Economic Support of Domestic Cinematography) talked about measures for creating quality and competitive films.

One of the most “painful” questions – the shortage of professionals in the Russian film industry – was raised by Sergey Selianov. He stated: “Today, cinema educational centers are focused on training artists, but not professionals.” He called for a substantial increase in the number of graduating specialists, and promised that the film industry would help out. It is important to attract modern educational methods (in particular, by cooperating with American film schools), and encourage practicing professionals to participate in educational processes.

Dmitriy Meskhiev, film director and producer, agreed with his colleague: “200 film schools operate in France, Italy and Germany, and more than 200 films are released every year! We need both film schools and two-year higher training courses. We are literally choking because of the severe lack of professionals!”

Yekaterina Mtsituridze, Channel One’s film expert, Director of the Russian Pavilion at the Cannes Film Festival specified why Russian pictures have failed on the world market of film distribution. “Five to seven quality films per year… what is there to promote! At present, we have started focusing on making systematic promotions of our films abroad rather than concentrating on festival activities.”

Sergey Rakhlin (Chairman of the Commission for Foreign Films of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association) agreed with Yekaterina’s statement: “When Aleksey Uchitel’s film was nominated for the Golden Globe Award, three American companies immediately offered to distribute the film in the USA.” At the same time, he remarked that the average professional level of Russian films does not allow them to compete favorably with Hollywood movies, and emphasized that this is basically due to the lack of modern educational programs.

He was supported by Aleksandr Shapiro (Pacifica Ventures): “Russia has taken a solid position among the top ten global leaders of film distribution. But, if Russian films are to enjoy a good share of the distribution market, they should be shot and produced at a more professional level. American film schools are often much better equipped than American studios; young specialists arrive at film studios armed with the most advanced technologies!”

Aleksandr Yevmenov, Rector of the Saint Petersburg State University of Cinema and Television thanked his colleagues for their support and constructive suggestions:  “Thank you for hearing us! Let’s raise and educate these professionals together!” He was supported by Vladimir Malyshev, Rector of the All-Russian State Institute of Cinematography.

The producer, Aleksandr Rodnianskiy, drew our attention to some disturbing facts: “…middle-aged people don’t go out to the movies; a family outing at the cinema has become a rare event! There is not much variety in cinema genres. A film release consolidates the efforts of all involved parties – from the State to the business world.” He emphasized that the KINOCLUB project can offer more choice and variety to Russian spectators, and draw audiences back to cinema theaters.

Ilia Morozovskiy (President of AB Finans Bank) made a sensational statement. He remarked that Russian banks would be more than happy to finance film productions, but they had no idea how to evaluate such projects: “You should help us bankers to develop a model for financing cinema projects! We are waiting for a detailed and elaborated financial model!” he said.

The resolution was approved in the end.

The All-Russian Forum – KINO ROSSIYI 2020 (RUSSIAN CINEMA 2020)


Conference Resolution

“Problems and Prospects of Development in the Russian Film Industry”


Saint Petersburg
April, 2011

The participants of the first conference of the All-Russian Forum – Kino Rossiyi 2020 (Russian Cinema 2020) prepared the following resolution pursuant to general aspirations to work together for the development of the domestic film industry. All the aspects of this sector – from initial plans of creative working groups to individual spectators who enter cinema theaters – are inseparably linked. For each link of the chain to be successful, all the others must also be successful: in other words, we are all in the same boat.

For these reasons, it is only through persistent dialogue, through closely associated and synchronized efforts that a viable, economical, and independent national film industry can be born.

We, the participants of the Forum, have approved the following resolution:

1.   We recommend that the RF Government should accelerate the creation process of KINO CITY OJSC with a view to implementing the project – Kinoclub: Culture, Education, and Communication - which provides for the modernization of film-screening infrastructures in cities of the Russian Federation.

2.    We recommend that the Ministry of Russia, the Committee for Culture at the State Duma of the Russian Federation with a view to implementing the resolutions of the Government Council for the Development of Domestic Cinematography dated 01.02.2011, presided by V.V. Putin, should introduce a legislative initiative to make amendments to Federal Law No. 357-ФЗ dated 13.12.2010 – “On the 2011 federal budget and the planned 2012 and 2013 period”- concerning the allocation of funds to be placed in the authorized capital of KINO CITY OJSC.

3.   We recommend that the Ministry of Russia, the Committee for Culture at the State Duma of the Russian Federation with a view to implementing the resolutions of the Government Council for the Development of Domestic Cinematography dated 01.02.2011, presided by V.V. Putin, should introduce a legislative initiative to make amendments to Federal Law No. 357-ФЗ dated 13.12.2010 – “On the 2011 federal budget and the planned 2012 and 2013 period”- concerning the allocation of funds amounting to 4.8 billion rubles from 2011 to 2013 in order to improve the material base of the Saint Petersburg State University of Cinema and Television, in compliance with the concept of development of the Saint Petersburg State University of Cinema and Television for 2011 to 2015.

4.    We recommend that the Saint Petersburg State University of Cinema and Television, and the S.A. Gerasimov All-Russian State Institute of Cinematography should sign an agreement on creative, scientific and advisory cooperation.

5.    We recommend that a working group should be created to work out strategies for the development of the Russian film industry – Kino Rossiyi 2020 (Russian Cinema 2020) – and finalize the Strategy project (Appendix 1).

 6.    We recommend that the next conference should be organized on June 7 within the framework of the XXII Russian Open Film Festival, Kinotavr, in Sochi.

Appendix 1. Strategies for the development of the Russian film industry – Kino Rossiyi 2020 (Russian Cinema 2020)

The main objective for working out long-term Strategies for the development of the film industry – Kino Rossiyi 2020 (Russian Cinema 2020) – until 2020 – “Ensuring long-term stable development of the Russian film industry by increasing the competitiveness of Russian national cinematography on the world market”.

Results of Strategy implementation will be observed in the inexpediency of the State exercising further important influences on economic parameters of development of the industry after 2020. Long-term strategic priorities of the Government of the Russian Federation after 2020 should focus on social and cultural objectives of State policy, whereas tasks to create additional economic preconditions for developing this sector and to stimulate the social and economic development of the territory through cinematography should be devolved to regional and local levels.

Thus, all the important legislative initiatives in the cinematography field, forming the basis for sustained development, should be fulfilled by 2020.

Long-term sustained development is determined by balanced development and long-term growth of all subsectors in the cinema industry, based on human capital development and high competitiveness of the Russian cinema on the world market.  
Competitiveness is capitalized by the costs of tangible and intangible assets in different sectors and companies operating on the market, applied technologies, “brands” of films shot and produced in the country, and successful work accomplished by people employed in this sector, as well as their professional qualities. So, competitiveness should be the final measuring stick for all sector achievements, to what extent the sector develops, and should provide opportunities for the further development of the film industry and all its segments as a whole, 

Suggested treatments for sustained development infer the following measures:

The mechanisms for implementing the State policy in the cinematography field, which is recorded in the Strategies, are as follows:

1.    Preparing amendments and additions to the normative-legal base regulating the activities of participants engaged in the film process.
2.    Direct financial support of cinematography through funds from the Federal budget, financing from regional and social budgets, and from non-budget sources.
3.    Creating mechanisms of State support for the development of film presentation infrastructures in Russian cities, including those in small- and middle-sized towns.
4.    Implementing functions for regulating, coordinating, and controlling the activity of cinema subjects within the framework of norms, rules, and obligations defined by current legislation, and contractual provisions, concluded by the State authority in charge of cinema administration.

5.   
Providing information and organizational support for cinema subjects with a view to maintaining their effective activities on both domestic and foreign markets.
Working out tasks to enhance the competitiveness of domestic cinematography.

Each of the priorities specified below represents long-term State policy objectives and challenges to change business strategies of companies operating in the film industry until 2020. Respectively, each objective (challenge) shall be developed in the Strategy and according to both State policy measures and business strategy positions of companies providing their solutions.
State policy objectives within the framework of Strategy for enhancing the competitiveness of cinematography on the domestic market:



1.    Increasing the competitiveness of low- and medium-budget national films funded by the State, including co-productions.
2.    Increasing the competitiveness of domestic children’s feature films and animated movies.
3.    Providing a variety of film genres on the domestic market.
4.    Developing exports of national films, including gross collections of national films due to good film distribution abroad.
5.    Making the distribution of national films run more efficiently, including distribution through the development of new technological platforms.
6.    Introducing new methods of financing film projects to expand possibilities for non-budget financing, and the gradual transition from irrevocable budgetary financing of commercial movies to repayment financing, as well as using guarantee and insurance mechanisms.   
7.    Improving the quality of scripts for the national film industry, and encouraging young talented people.
8.    Ensuring the accessibility of national films for the population.
9.    Developing research studies and creations in the cinematography field as tools of approved effective administrative decisions.  
10.    Stimulating the development and introduction of technological innovations in the film industry on the basis of national projects for both fundamental and applied education in the film industry.

Objectives within the framework of Strategies to enhance Russia’s competitiveness in the international film process:
1.    Expanding Russia’s participation in producing films jointly with foreign countries (co-productions).
2.    Developing the production of foreign films in Russia.
3.   
Transforming Russia into the largest center in terms of film production and communication in the Eurasian macro-region for the implementation of international cinema projects between European and Asian countries (a communication “hub” for European and Asian co-productions).
4.    Developing professional training and education in order to satisfy the demands of Russian and foreign subjects of the film industry.
5.    Creating and developing regional clusters of film productions in constituent subjects of the Russian Federation.   
6.    Developing and positioning Russian film “brands”, which could be competitive abroad, on foreign markets; this would ensure the growth of separate segments of the film industry.

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