On Monday morning, the Estonian Guild of Film Directors distributed a manifesto stating their concerns about the cuts to Estonian film funding. However, Siim Rohtla, film adviser at the Ministry of Culture, said that in its budget negotiations, the state is trying to ensure permanently higher film funding.
According to the directors, the 42 percent lower funding means that one year's subsidies could be divided across one-and-a-half feature films, a couple of short animations and some documentaries.
Liina Triškina-Vanhatalo, a founding member of the Estonian Film Directors Guild, gave an example where, although she would like to seek funding for her next film, "Mother Lion", elsewhere, it must in the end be based on domestic support. "If I am told in one moment that we cannot give you this promise, that you have domestic resources, then the search for all foreign money will grind to a halt and no one will give me a penny from Finland, Latvia, Lithuania or the U.K., while domestic funding ends up being zero."
Edith Sepp, director of the Estonian Film Institute, also stressed that Estonian co-production projects are being sought on the international market. "If the current funding is not enough, then we will definitely not be able to do some projects which are currently under development or for which partners have already been found," she said, adding that if this funding does not come, Estonian film will lose out a lot at international level.
Siim Rohtla said that on the other hand that they will definitely stand up for the growth of film funding, but more precise possibilities will become clear during the state budget negotiations. "It is still too early to say today because the government's budget negotiations are just beginning and the answer will become clear in the coming month," Rohtla said.
Editor: Roberta Vaino