European Youth Film Seminar
The first European Youth Cinema Seminar was held in Troms (Norway) in June of 2012 within the Nordic Youth Film Festival. Marija RatkoviŠ VidakoviŠ and Ksenija SankoviŠ participated at the seminar as representatives of YFF and FRFF. It was decided in Troms that the host of the next EYCS would be held precisely at the festival in Karlovac.
Because of the very tight schedule during the festival, the organizers, the Croatian Film Association and the Cinema Club Karlovac decided that the four-day seminar should start two days prior to the festival. This way the seminar participants will have two days to focus solely on the work of EYCS, while they can meet the young authors and their mentors (more than 150 participants) during the last two days. Seminar participants will also have a chance to watch the films in the festival competition (first three screenings).
The seminar includes individual presentations of all the participants (representatives of European film festivals in some way or completely dedicated to youth film making, media educators and representatives of successful video groups), group work discussions of topics directly related to youth film making, as well as a round table, to conclude the seminar, with the participation of not only around thirty seminar attendees, but also YFF and FRFF guests, as well as representatives of the host city involved with youth film making.
There are five focus topics of the seminar:
1) How to improve the cooperation among film festivals of youth filmmaking?
As mentioned above, representatives of all relevant youth film festivals around Europe will attend the seminar. Therefore, this group will focus on improving the cooperation between them.
2) The program of youth film festival as a platform for teaching media culture
In Croatia, the work of children’s film groups is pretty well adjusted to classes of media culture. However, the same is not true for youth film groups, while the situation is quite similar around Europe. This is the focus of the second group.
3) The importance of festivals for the local community in which it is held
Most festivals of youth filmmaking are not held in the capitals of their respective countries but rather in smaller local communities (true for twelve out of fifteen festivals). The focus of this group will be the influence of youth film festivals on local communities in which they are organized.
4) How can we make a youth film festival more interesting to sponsors?
Securing sponsors for a children’s film festival is a lot easier than for one devoted to the youth. This group of young people are somehow in between – not children any more, not yet adults. The fourth group will focus on how to make this age group more interesting to the sponsors.
5) What is a festival’s added value (side programs, participants’ free time, etc.)?
The fifth group will try to define what makes a youth film festival unique apart from its main competition program.
The round table is intended as the conclusion of the seminar during which, on the one hand, the five groups will present their conclusions, while on the other it will include a discussion about the problems and potentials of youth filmmaking. Since the round table is held on Thursday, the second day of YFF and FRFF, it will also be attended by film mentors of films in the festival competition, about twenty of them from Croatia and abroad. In that respect, the members of the selection jury and festival jury will also attend the discussion, as well as representatives of the host town, that is media educators from different Karovac high schools, and other experts in the field.