Funding and power: women in the audiovisual industry

Industry Talks Women Screen Industry and a round table with representatives of women filmmakers' associations were the main events of the day

Spanish Screenings Content is part of the 'Spain Audiovisual Hub of Europe' component of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan, promoted by the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry for Digital Transformation and of Civil Service

Yesterday, as the celebration of International Women's Day coincided with MAFIZ, the auditorium of the Thyssen Museum hosted two conferences focused on the female presence in the audiovisual industry.

The first of them brought together four women who manage festival industry departments: Francesca Palleschi from MIA Market (Italy), Daria Voumard from Locarno Pro (Switzerland), Weronika Czolnowska from New Horizons International Film Festival (Poland) and Marge Liiske from Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival. The event was moderated by Carmen Jordán from ICEX España Exportación e Inversiones and had a brief introduction by Camilo Vázquez in representation of ICAA.

All of them expressed their commitment to “promote both established and emerging talent” in their festivals. The persistent gender inequality was also discussed, mentioning barriers such as the balance of family and work life that limit women's participation in directing or crew leadership roles. Finally, it was emphasised that, despite the growing presence of women, “money is still in men's hands”.

This issue was also addressed at the round table titled Film financing: keys to equality in the industry. Associations AAMMA, CIMA and Mujeres en V.O. were represented and they stressed the importance of cooperation and vindication among women. The moderator, Inés Romero, began her intervention with an illustrative fact: only 37% of all productions are led by women.

The meeting was attended by industry agents involved in this matter. For example, Belén Pérez, a lawyer specialising in audiovisual law, pointed out that “we have to maximise funding channels. We must combine aid and tax credits to set up our financing plan”.

MAFIZ also carries out specific actions to support films made by women throughout all its editions. Among all the initiatives, MAFF Women Screen Industry is particularly noteworthy, with the titles Ellas en la ciudad by Reyes Gallegos Rodríguez and La pérdida de la magia by Silvia Rey Canudo. In addition, Warmi Lab, an initiative created to provide new professionals with a wide range of tools, has been strengthened in this edition with a programme for Paraguayan and Andalusian women producers.

Spanish Screenings Content is one of the four axes of Spanish Screenings XXL along with Spanish Screenings On Tour, Spanish Screenings: Financing & Tech (at the San Sebastian Festival), and Spanish Screenings 360, a programme of active actions throughout the year that also includes a monthly podcast available on all platforms, and the future creation of a virtual promotion and business platform.

'Spanish Screenings XXL, an international market for Spanish audiovisual production' is a project involving the Ministry of Culture through the ICAA, the Ministry for Digital Transformation and of Civil Service, ICEX España Exportación e Inversiones, Festival de Málaga and the San Sebastian Festival.

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