Vajna Pledges Support for Hungarian Scripts

By FNE Staff

BUDAPEST: Hungary's new commissioner for the film industry pledged to finance the development of scripts at a meeting of film professionals during the 42 Hungarian Film Week (5-8 May 2011 www.magyarfilmszemle.hu) saying that scripts were the essence of filmmaking. Andy Vajna said that the new, government backed Hungarian National Film Fund would spend 300 million forints over the coming year on hundreds of scripts with a view to making 8 to 10 feature films.

He also said that the fund would provide a framework for funding films but that it would not interfere in the creative independence of filmmakers. He said that the process of restructuring had not yet been completed but that scripts would play the central role in deciding if a film should be funded or not.

The National Film Fund would appoint experts that would assess scripts and ideas submitted to it on a points system based on criteria such as character development, story, cultural value and other considerations. The director's and producer's track-record would also be considered but that each project would be evaluated on its own merits. He also emphasized that there would be strict budget and accounting controls in place to make sure money was spent properly.

Vajna said that his own personal tastes would not form the basis for awarding funding to projects and that the new system needed to be fair and just. But he emphasized the need to make films that got Hungarian audiences back into the cinemas to see Hungarian films and also that would be seen outside Hungary at film festivals and other international events.

He previously announced that Eurimages, the MEDIA Desk, festivals, and sales of Hungarian films abroad will be under the international department of the National Film Fund