SOFIA: European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel and world-famous director Wim Wenders, Ambassador of the SaferInternet4EU campaign, participated in a public debate on the improvement of the Digital Single Market regulations on 5 April, 2019 in Sofia. Part of the wider promotional EU campaign, the all-day event was hosted by the Commission's representation in Bulgaria, which involved in it young internet users, film professionals and local media.
The discussion was moderated by Jana Karaivanova Head of the National Film Center of Bulgaria, who emphasised the importance of the event and the cooperation between Bulgaria and the EU.
Mariya Gabriel emphasised the preparation of a unique platform, where European films can be viewed on the internet. She reported that a fifth draft of the prototype is to be made public in a few weeks. A second initiative planned for year 2020 is the European Film Week containing a mutually approved selection of films to be shown during seven days throughout Europe. “We are also preparing a catalogue composed of classical European films, which we wish to be integrated in the European schools programs” – Gabriel added.
„Today, during the transition from analogue to digital technology we have to struggle and bring Europe’s cultural and film heritage to the future. I believe that Bulgaria will find a way to save its national treasures” – Wenders told the audience.
Bulgaria’s Minister of Culture Boil Banov, present at the event, underlined that the restoration and digitalisation of film is a most complex and long-term process and that the country counts a lot on EU assistance. As for the easier access of young people to culture Banov said that in 2018 all the country’s museums became free of charge.”In 2019 we expanded the free of charge policy to the theatrical performances and now we are thinking on facilitating the way young people could watch quality films without paying” - Banov added.