Board meeting of the EAK from 22. to 24.2. in Weidenbach
Fourteen items were on the table. Among the most important results of the meeting were the following topics and resolutions:
The number of members currently amounts to 181 plus 94 from Switzerland. The board and members of the EAK are called upon to advertise for new members. The age demographic in the EAK shows that a massive decline is to be expected in the future.
Review of the Festival 2017
The opinion of all board members about the Euro-Filmfestival in Harsefeld was without exception very positive. Organisation and execution were brilliant. Stormy weather, however, hindered the arrival of some people, which was no fault of the organiser but is not uncommon in northern Germany.
Euro Film Festival 2018
This year's Euro-Filmfestival will be hosted by the Bludenz Film Club. Chairman Werner Scheffknecht receives grants in the form of benefits in kind from the city. The State of Vorarlberg is giving a grant.
The programme of the festival will be publicised on the media system of the EAK (Website, EAK-Infobrief, EUROFILMER-digital).
A festival brochure is in preparation. In addition to the written content, Werner Scheffknecht asks for photos of all authors, if possible in JPG format, at this point, in order to suit the media requirements of the EAK. Suitable photos should be sent as soon as possible (a half-length portrait or photo with camera).
The festival juding session will take place from 16.-19. July 2018 under the direction of Peter Klüver in Bludenz. The jurors are: Hans Finnern – Switzerland Jon Gisle – Norway Res Gnehm – Switzerland Helmi Hansen – Germany Sonja Steger – Austria Wolfgang Thomas - Germany
In addition to the points rating, the authors will again be provided with a written summary of the jury's assessment ("The jury has said").
What's the next step?
The question of the future of the EAK was the subject of a broad discussion. Wolfgang Thomas has researched international competition organisers and found that on a European level there is an increasing number of opportunities to admit film students and professionals to the respective festivals in the amateur field.
According to the statutes of the EAK, student films, commissioned films and professional films are currently excluded. In this context, many filmmakers had expressed their surprise at the credibility of the assertion of the author of the award-winning film "Fridgemania" at the Euro-Filmfestival 2017 in Harsefeld that it was purely an amateur film.
New structure at the international Amateur Film Festival
Wolfgang Thomas is in the process of establishing a new structure for the international amateur film festival in Harsefeld. To this end, he is holding talks with businessmen from the region. As it is customary abroad, as mentioned above, to admit students of film as well as semi-professional filmmakers without commercial background as amateurs, the plan is not compatible with the statutes of the EAK.
For this reason, this alternative European film festival is to be planned parallel to the EAK, but will only be implemented when the EAK can no longer exist due to a shrinking number of members or financial emergency. It is therefore a model which, with foresight, would like to carry the idea of the EAK into the future under other broader conditions. In this context, events are planned with business people and films by authors from the Eurofilmer circle - whose consent is required. Four events per year in the form of matinees are conceivable. All this can run parallel to the traditional EuroFilm events without overlapping dates. The aim of this vision is to build up an expanded competition platform throughout Europe with amateur filmmakers and film students in the spirit of the European ideals.
Costs are to be covered, among other things, through the participation of the above-mentioned businessmen. Readiness for technical assistance and participation in juries can be ensured - from 2019 the EuroFilmfestival is to take place in its usual form in Harsefeld for at least 3 to 4 years, i.e. until 2021/22.
The current membership in the EAK and the currently still viable financial basis guarantee the continued existence of the association until further notice. In case the situation worsens and a dissolution of the association becomes necessary, timely planning and visions for the future, as presented by Wolfgang Thomas, are necessary.
In Switzerland, jurors who have not yet been trained are involved in the juries in order to test their operational capability for the future. Hansruedi Wiget or Res Gnehm can offer training courses for southern Bavaria and Switzerland. The North must organise itself. Peter Klüver does not currently offer jury training.
Res Gnehm will be proposed as contact person for the Eurofilmer at the SIFA meeting and will then be available to the EAK. The new rating system has worked well. Res Gnehm assumes that there will be no new upheavals in Switzerland.
The election documents must be sent in December 2018; by the end of January 2019 the votes must have been cast in accordance with the statutes. In the next EUROFILMER-digital the call for candidates will take place. In addition, all members will be contacted individually. If there are not enough candidates for election, the association may be dissolved.
Reports by Forum West Forum Leader:
Roswitha Katharina Wirtz takes a lot of care of the members in her region, but often with little response. R.K. Wirtz receives a grant from the district, because she made a big film about the region. In addition, she shows films at various institutions under the motto "From seniors for seniors" - another way to get support.
Anni Bergauer reports that this year the Filmclub Augsburg under the direction of Helga Aegerter will host the forum. The jury members are Werner Scheffknecht and Reinhard Fritz from Austria and Toni Wallner, Manuela Waltl and Anni Bergauer from Germany. The judging will take place on the day the Forum films are projected.
Preparations for the festival are well on schedule. Werner Scheffknecht had a conversation with Mr. Glatzl, the chairman of the Association of Austrian Film Amateurs. There is not much interest in the Eurofilmers, as UNICA provides access to the international film scene. Contacts with other film clubs are just as difficult.
Wolfgang Thomas reports that there are 57 members in the Forum Nord, 2/3 of them are active. The contact with the members is good. Numerous activities stimulate communication between the members.
Peter Klüver will be in charge of the next edition of EUROFILMER-digital after the Euro-Filmfestival in Bludenz. Wolfgang Schydlo, currently being represented by Peter Klüver, will retire after the holidays and will then be available to the EAK again.
Minutes: Anni Bergauer
Editorial processing: Peter Klüver