Creation of the INTERNATIONAL ROMANI FILM COMMISSION

Members of Perpetuum Mobilɛ assisted in co-organising the SEEKING: ROMA* FILM-MAKERS! event

http://www.facebook.com/events/266409603427891/

Which resulted in the following vital Declaration:

Creation of the
INTERNATIONAL ROMANI FILM COMMISSION
Berlin, 15 February 2012

DECLARATION

To make it possible for more Romani (Gypsy) Filmmakers to realize their projects and to generate more recognition of Romani film professionals in their states, in Europe and around the world, we hereby agree to establish an International Romani Film Commission.

The tasks of the International Romani Film Commission (hereinafter “The Commission”) will be:

• To identify Romani film professionals and facilitate alliances between them;
• To advise, promote, advocate for and empower Romani filmmakers in all aspects of film and
audiovisual production;
• To establish a Fund of The Commission to support the production of films by Romani filmmakers;
• To lobby for better recognition of Romani filmmakers in national and international film
commissions and film industry forums;
• To set up an International Association of Romani Filmmakers (IARF).

Key Procedural Rules
(To be detailed and enshrined in the Constitution of The Commission)

To guarantee the full independence of The Commission’s decision-making process, there must be a minimum of three major sources of funding for the Commission.

Romani decision-making power within the Commission will be guaranteed by stipulating that The Commission’s Board will have a minimum of two thirds of Romani members.

Tony Gatlif ________________________
Katalin Barsony_____________________
Hamze Bytyci______________________
Damian James Le Bas_______________
Dejan Markovic_____________________
Lidija Mirkovic _____________________
Sami Mustafa _____________________
Judit Stalter_______________________
Ivor Stodolsky_____________________
================================

A revised version of this Declaration will be made publicly available online. To express your support, please visit the new facebook page of the International Romani Film Commission:
http://www.facebook.com/International.Romani.Film.Commission

This above link will also be posted on the Facebook page of
Cinema Total at Collegium Hungaricum, Berlin.

Background to the Platform for the creation of a Romani Film Commission

A group of independent Romani filmmakers from five different countries and their fellows have united to create a platform for the representation of the common interests of Romani filmmakers worldwide after meeting in the context of the Berlinale 2012.

We have decided to create the International Romani Film Commission based on the following common concerns:

While films are among the most useful tools for promoting understanding and debate between majority and minority cultures, unfortunately, when it comes to the representation of Roma, they still reproduce centuries-old prejudices via a static conception of culture.

Romani filmmakers are in a unique position to revolutionize perceptions of Roma around the world but face many difficulties beyond those encountered by most independent filmmakers. Romani film professionals are overwhelmingly under-represented in the film industry. We need Romani people to be present and represented in all aspects of film making, from pre-production to distribution and beyond, in front of and behind the camera.

Due to centuries of exclusion and forced assimilation, the Roma have never had the opportunity to show their real face, to communicate an understandable message about themselves.

In these circumstances, Romani filmmakers in particular are called upon to examine the influence of their work and to mould their effects in positive and constructive ways, especially in terms of how we deal with cultural, ethnic, sexual, religious and other forms of diversity. This is crucial in confronting racism, xenophobia and nationalist extremism.

We are a new generation of artists who are already at work. We seek a new interpretation of our world, one that is created by Romani artists themselves. The envisioned alternative representation highlights our strengths; our capacity for fusion; our sense of glamour, humor and irony; our adaptability, mobility and
trans-nationalism.

The old representation of Roma-Gypsies is dead, the new and real one is now born.

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