Film industry to suffer setback following centenary, says expert

A total sixteen, largely state-sponsored films were commissioned for the silver screen when Latvia celebrates its centenary next year. However this means the return to normal funding regime will spell trouble for the industry, says Dita Rietuma, head of the National Film Center. 

The return to prior funding levels would be dramatic following the rapid growth and intense work in the industry, amounting, according to Rietuma, to a "heavy fall to practically nowhere".

"We're slowly returning to an ascetic survival mode. Film funding will scarcely reach pre-crisis levels," she told Latvian Radio on August 16.

While the industry has no hopes for increased money influx after Latvia's founding centenary, it hopes to show that local films need and deserve much more funds than they have historically received.

The first of the flicks made for Latvia's centenary, titled Grandpa More Dangerous Than Computer, received 88% of its €640,000 budget from public funds. It will appear on screens across Latvia in August. 

Earlier Rietuma said the National Film Center has asked to increase their funding for 2020 so that the industry does not bounce back to the bare minimum on which the film center says the industry has subsisted for years. 

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