HomeInsightsEuropean Commission announces directory of European films to facilitate online access

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Launched with the assistance of the European Audiovisual Observatory, the Commission says that the new directory will help professionals, public authorities and citizens to find information about European films and their availability online via video-on-demand (VOD) services throughout the European Union.

Currently, the Commission says, just 25% of films available via VOD services in the EU are European. National databases of films already exist, but there is none at European level, even though Europe is a major player in world cinema, with more than 18,000 films produced between 2007 and 2016 and a global production volume that has increased by 47%, from 1,444 feature films in 2007 to 2,124 in 2016.

The directory is currently still at the prototype stage and includes data from 115 VOD services on 35,000 European films. The launch of the beta version is planned for the spring of 2019, and the definitive version for the end of next year.

Funded by the MEDIA programme, which supports the European audiovisual industry, the directory will be accessible to private individuals, professionals and public authorities. It will be of benefit in various ways:

  • for the public: better visibility for European cinema across the EU;
  • for professionals: directors and producers will know the countries and services where their films are available on VOD; distributors wishing to better exploit their European films will be able to identify VOD services offering similar works and that may be interested in hosting their films; VOD services will be able to identify European films available online in other places that could be of interest to their audiences.
  • for public authorities: an indication as to the legal supply of European films in the digital world; support funds and promotional film agencies will know whether the films they support are actually available and being exported to other Member States; ultimately, it will provide regulators with a tool to help them monitor the implementation of the revised Audiovisual Media Services Directive, which includes provisions for a quota of 30% for European works to increase and enhance the presence of European films online.

To read the Commission’s press release in full, click here.