This month we speak with Ondrej Siroky, the programmer of Kino Dukla from Jihlava, Czech Republic. Kino Dukla, a new member of Europa Cinemas, is one of the venues of Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival. It has two screenings halls with 222 seats (162 and 60), and it usually has about 30 screening per week. Kino Dukla is the second ranked cinema in Jihlava after a multiplex and had 26,000 admissions in 2014 with each month doing better than the same month last year. That's great news for a cinema which celebrated its 100th anniversary on 1 May 2015.
FNE: What is the biggest challenge of running a cinema such as yours?
Ondrej Siroky: For our cinema, the most important thing is to respond the actual demands on films. The audience wants to see some movies right from the premiere, but also to wait for some of them. It is important to choose those films which will surely bring the audience to cinema and will ensure the revenue for the theater operation. Thanks to this we can offer extra programmes like opera, ballet, different festivals, European films and other events with lower attendance.
FNE: What kind of films do you prefer to screen and why?
O.S.: Regarding the programming, we prefer an adequate number of blockbusters. Their income allows us to programme movies for the passionate audiences. Thanks to the programming of movie hits, we can create a varied and interesting progamme.
FNE: The cinema is home to many festivals, events and film weeks. Why are these important and what do they achieve?
O.S.: Film festivals are always something special. Thanks to them people talk about our theatre more, so for us it more like an advertisement. This is how we can show that we are interested in some topics (French film, the situation in Tibet, etc) and we can share this with the audience.
FNE: What is the role of Europa Cinemas for cinemas such as your own and why is it important?
O.S.: Every year a lot of European films are shot. A lot of them are really good. Unfortunately there is not sufficient promotion in this area, so the major audience is not watching these kind of films. Thanks to the Europa Cinemas project we can afford to increase the number of European film´s screenings so our audience has always a chance to watch them.
FNE: How does a cinema like yours serve the local community?
O.S.: Kino Dukla Jihlava is really a very domestic cinema. The audience has to walk to our place and even so, they are still coming back. There is a multiplex cinema in the city, but we are not competitors. They are the cinema for the people from the surrounding area. We are the cinema for the local residents.
FNE: Can you say something about your work with young audiences?
O.S.: Working with the young audience is not easy. Most of them prefer visiting the multiplex. We are still trying to screen the movies for the younger audience and the attendance is increasing. We are already trying to attract the youngest kids. We offer them Baby Bio, screenings for parents with small children. We also have Bijasek, screenings for preschool and school kids. We offer screening for schools too. In this case the selection of the films is up to the teacher or the pupils.
FNE: What about the digitalisation of cinemas? How will it affect your work and your cinema?
O.S.: The DCI standard in the cinema allowed us to screen the movies in the premiere dates, 3D movies and first of all to better work with the programme itself. We can react to the current interest of the audience and add shows or change halls.
Population: 10.6 m (2018) GDP per capita in USD: 20,368 (2017) Total admissions: 16.34 m (2018) Admissions per capita: 1.54 (2018) Box office: 88.6 m EUR (2018) National market share: 22% (2018)Feature film production: 60 (2018) Number of digital screens: 513 (2018)Average ticket price in EUR: 5.42 (2018)Annual state support for film industry: 14.1 m EUR
Source: Population Reference Bureau, World Bank, Czech Film Fund
Admissions Top Ten 2018
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