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Developments of the film and audiovisual field discussed at the visionary conference in Tallinn

On 27 and 28 November, representatives of film and audiovisual field, experts, policymakers and visionaries will gather in Tallinn for the international visionary conference to discuss topical issues of the European media and film industry. The conference is organised within the framework of the Estonian Presidency of the EU Council, during the 21st Black Nights Film Festival and is opened by the Estonian Minister of Culture Indrek Saar.

The objective of the conference, organised by the Estonian Ministry of Culture at the Tallinn cinema Kino Kosmos IMAX  is to assess the impact of technological changes on the EU audiovisual landscape. Leading experts and visionaries from the audiovisual sector will discuss where the contemporary media and film industries are headed long-term and how the development of business models and analysing of big data affect the industry as well as culture more broadly. The conference will also focus on new technologies such as virtual and augmented reality which may significantly impact the functioning of the entire sector in the near future.
Just like Skype changed telecom, Uber the taxi and Spotify the music industry, the audiovisual sector will most likely experience an impact on the similar scale in the near future, Mati Kaalep, Adviser for Audiovisual issues at the Estonian Ministry of Culture and one of the organisers of the conference explained. „It is already apparent that we cannot proceed in the old way. This is clearly illustrated by the exceptional ease of piracy, which in turn, affects the functioning of the entire audiovisual sector. If a film is not released sufficiently quickly in a given country, the consumers will find the opportunity to access it illegally on the Internet, and the effective enforcement of copyrights on a large scale becomes extremely complicated ,“ Kaalep said.
He added that the mediation of audiovisual content is only one of the great changes accompanying technological advances – the changes occurring in the mediums that enable content consumption may be just as great, including data collection about people’s consumption habits.  „This , however, may be felt by the consumers as rather intrusive towards their rights.  Are such techniques acceptable in the European cultural space and will it also impact our behaviour, or the content that we are provided in the future? During the conference, these and many other questions will be addressed in our discussions,“ Kaalep explained.
The conference will present an impressive line-up of renowned speakers. One of the main keynote speeches will be presented by Jeremy Darroch, the CEO of Sky Group; Barak Berkowitz, Director of Operations and Strategy at the MIT Media Lab; Efe Cakarel, the founder and CEO of MUBI, a company focused on the streaming of art-house films. The participants in the subsequent discussions will include, among others, representatives from Google, Netflix, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the Finnish Broadcasting Company (YLE), the European Commission and the European Film Agency Directors (EFADs). The conference will be closed with a keynote by Sir David Puttnam.

More information on the conference is available HERE.
Follow the live broadcast of the conference via the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union website HERE.

A visionary conference in audiovisual field entitled Pictured Futures: Connecting Content, Tech & Policy in Audiovisual Europe will take place on 27 and 28 November as part of the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, at the initiative of the Estonian Ministry of Culture and in cooperation with the Black Nights Film Festival and the Estonian Film Institute, supported by the European Commission and Enterprise Estonia. #picturedfutures #EU2017EE

Dear Journalists, with interview requests and additional info, please contact Kai-Ines Nelson, Spokesperson for the Estonian Ministry of Culture: +372 5568 9644,



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About Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival

Started in 1997, the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival has grown into one of the biggest film festivals in Northern Europe and busiest regional industry platforms, hosting more than 1000 guests and industry delegates and over 160 journalists. The festival screens around 250 features and more than 300 shorts and animations and sees an attendance of 80 000 people annually. In 2017 the festival was covered in 71 languages with a potential global media audience of over 1.1 billion people.

As of 2014 the festival holds the FIAPF accreditation for holding an international competition programme which puts the festival into the so- called A-category of film festivals, alongside other 14 festivals in the world (including Cannes, Berlinale, Venice, Karlovy Vary, San Sebastian, Shanghai, Tokyo etc).  

Black Nights has an umbrella structure with two sub-festivals PÖFF Shorts and youth and children's film festival Just Film taking place concurrently with the main festival,
two off-season festivals - Haapsalu Horror and Fantasy Film Festival and Tartu Love Film Festival - and a fully-fledged film industry platform Industry@Tallinn, organised jointly with the Baltic Event Co-production market.

Black Nights Film Festival 16 Nov - 2 Dec
PÖFF Shorts 20 Nov - 25 Nov
Just Film 16 Nov - 2 Dec
Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event 26 Nov - 30 Nov



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