03 November 2023

The two-day (November 2-3) "Armenian Cinema 100"  International Conference took place on November 2-3 in Yerevan. This significant event, held under the patronage of UNESCO, brought together the representatives of prominent European and Asian film companies as well as leading industry experts. This symbolic forum is carried out by the National Cinema Center of Armenia with the support of the RA Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports.  


Zhanna Andreasyan, the RA Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports, opened the Conference by addressing the participants. Welcoming industry professionals, who represent cinema and are actively involved in shaping and implementing policies within the film industry, the Minister highlighted that Armenian cinema, which celebrates its centennial this year, united and brought them together in Armenia. " It is of utmost importance for us that this event is celebrated by the cultural community of the world together with Armenia, which is clearly evidenced by the fact that the 100th anniversary of Armenian cinema has been included in the UNESCO list of anniversaries and commemorative events. The two-day Conference dedicated to the 100th anniversary of Armenian cinema provides the best opportunity to re-evaluate our film heritage, engage in discussions about the challenges and achievements of the film industry in general, and share experiences from countries involved in developing the film industry. I congratulate everyone on the commencement of the Conference and wish them interesting and productive work,” was mentioned in the Minister’s address delivered by Svetlana Sahakyan, Head of the Department of Modern Art of the MoESCS.


Shushanik Mirzakhanyan, Director of the National Cinema Center of Armenia,  in her opening speech expressed gratitude to the Conference attendees for participating in the event dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Armenian cinema. She acknowledged the century-long history of Armenian cinema and its significant contribution to the film heritage starting from the period of silent cinema, captivating audiences globally through participating in international platforms. Shushanik Mirzakhanyan also highlighted the ongoing initiatives of the National Cinema Center of Armenia notably since 2019, the primary goal of which is the restoration of films and popularization of the 100-year-old film heritage.


Susanne Nikolchev, the Director of the European Audiovisual Observatory, also addressed the participants of the Conference via video link.


The main and key topics of the two-day International Conference in Yerevan are closely related to the various stages of the development and existence of Armenian cinema: "Armenian Cinema 100", "Preservation, Restoration, Dissemination Mechanisms of Film Heritage", "Women's Contribution to Cinema".


The reports made by Conference participants once again confirmed the true value and significance of the hundred-year film heritage of Armenian cinema within the broader context of global cinematic history.


Reports were delivered by Joel Shapron ("Soviet and post-Soviet Armenian movies at the Cannes Film Festival and in the French theaters), Aneta Yerznkyan ("Armenian Cinema 100: Traditions and Innovations"), Anush Vardanyan ("Namus" like a Metaplot: Mythological source of the First Armenian Films "). Presentations on film heritage were made by Grigori Kakabadze ("Film Heritage: Destruction and Restoration"), Tejas Pagar (" Preservation of cinema as a Cultural Heritage"), Anke Hahn ("Film Heritage Online"), Petr Ryzhenkov ("Scanning to 8K guarantees the preservation and monetization of archives") and others.


The role of women in cinema was addressed by Françoise Navailh ("The Contribution of Women to Cinema", Leonardo Filasto: "The Other History of the Cinema"), Karen Avetisyan ("Gender parity policy trends in international film festivals"), Sona Karapoghosyan ("Armenian Female Animators") and others.


Key Factors in Cinema


On November 3, during the second day of the international conference commemorating the 100th anniversary of Armenian cinema, five professional panel discussions were conducted addressing the following topics: "State Policies and Governance Systems in the Audiovisual Sector", "The Mechanisms and Perspectives of the Development of Film Production and Distribution of Film Products", "Collaborative Filmmaking to Promote Cross-cultural Collaborations", "Restoration of Film Heritage, Challenges and Opportunities", "Film festivals as a Way of Creating Intercultural Connections".


The speakers noted that such categorization of these thematic discussions does not imply that the topics are different, on the contrary, these 5 topics are interconnected and complement one another. The mentioned topics are equally crucial for the creation, preservation and dissemination of cinema.


The speakers mentioned that  film production and film heritage vary from country to country. Therefore, it would be reasonable to group the intended cooperation based on product type  and geographical considerations. This will make it easier to coordinate cooperation ways, ensuring more tangible expectations. 



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