KRASNO, DIRA U HANUSOVIC, ALOIS NEBEL: THE FILM-FRIENDLY AWARD 2014 GOES TO THE JESENIKY FILM OFFICE
Jeseniky Film Office is the first winner of the Film-Friendly award, a competition directed at regional entities that are most filmmaker-friendly, based on communication with filmmakers; effective conceptualization in attracting regional film projects; and subsequent use of audiovisual materials to promote the region.
The prize was awarded on May 2, during the closing ceremony of the Film Festival Plzen Final, by APA’s Executive Director Katerina Weissova, and by CzechTourism Agency’s Executive Director Monika Palatkova.The statuette was accepted by Jan Zavesicky, Chairman of the Executive Council for Jeseniky - Association for Tourism. “We are extremely pleased with the award and it’s our hope that it will draw other filmmakers to our region. We try to collaborate actively with the film industry because it brings both money and visitors to our region. We hope that our members and partners, as well as other public and private players in the Olomouc region continue to support us. We are grateful for their support, and our work would not be possible without it, “ said Mr.Zavesicky.
The annual Film-Friendly award is an initiative by APA, the Czech Film Commission film office and the CzechTourism agency. A panel of judges made up of representatives from all three organizations, judged 12 contenders based on two fundamental criteria: work with filmmakers in pre-production and during production; and the use of the filmmaking process and locally made films as a tool to promote a region.
As the prize was the first ever awarded, the judges exceptionally took into account not only last year’s but also previous years’ activities. From this point of view, the winner Jeseniky was most appealing to the panel of judges, as the local film office has systematically dedicated itself to working with filmmakers since 2012. At the same time, its mother organization, Jeseniky – Association for Tourism, has actively used film production and TV projects to promote the region.
“We’ve been encouraging localities to collaborate with filmmakers for some time now, and from year to year we sense a greater regional openness and interest in film projects. The Film-Friendly award is an appraisal of these efforts. It’s clear that the competition is viewed very positively and that it generates interest. As a result, it was not easy to select a winner. We had four serious runners-up – next to Jeseniky, there was Ostrava, the eastern region of the Czech Republic and the Karlovar region. They all have a space set up where filmmakers can contact them; they actively communicate with production companies and use the films made as a tool in marketing their localities,” said Ludmila Claussova, Director of the Czech Film Commission.
The award-winner Jeseniky Film Office has previously partaken in the making of the movies Krasno and Dira u Hanusovic, while it is currently participating in the making of a documentary titled Krajina. Thanks to Jeseniky Film Office’s accommodating negotiations, it received a very positive response from film producers. “Well-functioning regional film offices are very beneficial to a producer. They help us orient faster in a local environment, and they are the source of important information and contacts. In an ideal case, they can even be helpful in finding local sources of funding. I personally have had a great experience with this type of cooperation during the filming of Dira u Hanusovic,” said producer Ondrej Zima.
The great advantage of Jeseniky Film Office was its ability to sell “film-friendly” to potential visitors.
“To follow in the footsteps of a protagonist you are familiar with on the silver screen is magical for many people. The places where beloved movies take place do not become travel destinations all on their own. That is what Jeseniky -- where several film-tourism projects related to movies like Alois Nebel, Krasno or Kladivo na carodejnice took off -- realized and acted upon,” explains Monika Palatkova, General Director of the CzechTourism Agency.
In the coming years, the competition’s goal will be to raise awareness about the benefits of audiovisual production; to encourage regions to be more active in courting filmmakers; and to emphasize the benefits of targeted marketing through film tourism.
“We look forward to the continuation of the competition and in future, we would also like to award individuals or specific film locations because without the participation of individuals and localities, it is very difficult to make a movie,” added Ludmila Claussova.
More information about the competition and a complete list of participants can be found at www.filmfriendly.cz
Czech Film Commission
Phone: +420 – 724 329 956
Phone + 420 221 580 274; 775 930 924
The Audiovisual Producers’ Association was founded in 1994 and unites producers and production companies in Czech feature, documentary and animation films, film production services, advertising, and television production. The chief goal of the association is protecting and promoting producers’ interests, negotiating with other professional associations, with organizations that protect authors’ rights and with government representatives.
The Czech Film Commission is a national film office that supports and promotes audiovisual production in the Czech Republic and provides film producers with information and advice about the most effective approach to filming in the Czech Republic. It was founded in 2004 and since 2013 is part of the National Film Archive, a contributing organization of the Ministry of Culture.