The annual Europa Cinemas conference was held in Athens from November 22-24, 2013. A number of themes emerged from discussions during the two-day event: the development of "non-film" events in the Europa Cinemas network (quoting figures from Picture House: 4% of programming in 2010, 13% in 2013), the important role of social media and the internet in public relations (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, etc.), and the forging of new partnerships to attract audience interest (such as developing closer contact with schools, offering free distribution of books about film culture to educate the public, and organizing concerts after film screenings, among other initiatives).
In parallel with this event, Europa International’s annual conference was also held in Athens, focusing on the subject of "New Platforms for New Opportunities." New distribution models were presented, including Distribution 2.0 by The Match Factory, Emerging Pictures (www.emergingpictures.com), and Cinedigm in the USA, as well as the program of the Sundance Film Institute’s Artist Services (www.sundance.org/artistservices/). Claude-Éric Poiroux (photo) called attention to the standardization of movie programming in certain countries whilst the number of screens being constructed is increasing, a phenomenon that is particularly apparent in Asian markets. Growth in the Europa Cinemas network is currently at a virtual standstill due to the closure of a number of theaters and the decision by some exhibitors to leave the network.
It is worth noting that several Greek distributors (such as Danaos and Cinemax Visual Productions) have expressed their intention to acquire French films in 2014. The economic crisis in Greece has forced exhibitors to test out new initiatives to win over audiences, such as Danaos, which offers reduced ticked prices on Wednesdays, a scheme that has proved successful. With 470 movie theaters around the country, including around 150 outdoor theaters, Greece registered 9.9 million admissions in 2012, with only 30% of theaters currently equipped with digital technology.
For further information, visit the Europa Cinemas website.
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