LJUBLJANA: The Slovenian parliamentary Culture Committee has voted unanimously to call on the Culture Ministry to gradually increase the annual budget for film production from 4.5 m to 11 m EUR by 2022.
At the request of the parliamentary group Levica, the Culture Committee met on 13 November 2018 at an urgent meeting to discuss the weak financial situation of Slovenian film production and the departure of young filmmakers abroad, seeking to obtain appropriate payments and better conditions for their work.
Luka Mesec, the coordinator of the Levica group, said that the country envisaged a budget of 8.5 m EUR for the film sector in 2011, and the National Culture Programme envisaged 11 m annually for a period of 2014-2017. But in reality the budget for film production has reached only a third of this amount, 4.5 m EUR a year.
"This not only puts us on the very tail of Europe, but also on the tail of the former Yugoslav republics - only Kosovo and Montenegro are behind us," he remarked, adding that in Slovenia the average amount of money spent on a single film is 0.8 m EUR, while in Croatia this amount is 1 m EUR, in Italy 2 m EUR and in Hungary EUR 2.4 m EUR.
To show the potential of Slovenian film the committee members were invited to a screening of My Last Year as a Loser by Urša Menart at the 29th Ljubljana IFF, running 7 – 18 November 2018.
The State Secretary from the Ministry of Culture Vojko Stopar said that the Ministry is aware of the unenviable situation in which the Slovenian film is, adding that other areas of culture are in a similar situation. "If the budget for culture is to increase, there should be no problems with the proposed resolution," he added.
“I am glad that the Culture Committee unanimously agreed to gradually increase the annual budget for film production in Slovenia by 2022," Nataša Bučar, the director of the Slovenian Film Centre, told FNE.