MOSCOW, August 27 (Itar-Tass) — Filmmakers and film fans are celebrating Russian Cinema Day. It was on August 27, 1919 that a decree was signed on the nationalization of the film industry. Later, in the USSR, and then in Russia, this date was made a public holiday for everyone associated with the world of one of the most popular arts.
As the first deputy chairman of the Russian Filmmakers’ Union, Sergei Lazaruk, told Itar-Tass, on the day of Russian cinema “different regions of our country will see meetings and retrospective film showings. In the capital, the day will be celebrated at the festival Moscow Premiere.
“I congratulate my colleagues. Cinema brings together people of different ages and professions. I want to thank everyone who gives us the opportunity to enjoy samples of great art,” People’s Artist of Russia Irina Miroshnichenko said. “Today I recall Pyriev, Bondarchuk and other great directors. Every time I am delighted to see Kalatozov’s masterpiece The Cranes Are Flying.”
People’s Artist of Russia Sergei Bezrukov addressed his colleagues in these words, “My hat is off to our greats, who in this challenging period for the national cinema are trying to make good movies.”
“These days when movie theaters have become private, and films are treated as marketable commodities, the sale of which must extract as much money as possible,” continued Bezrukov. “Attempts to persuade distributors this or that film is a success because it has won an award at a festival is not always possible. So we try to create movies meeting the requirements of producers and audiences, and exciting and ideological at the same time. It is important there are producers who love the national cinema and fight for it.”
On Friday, Moscow hosted a multimedia teleconference that linked audiences in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Smolensk, timed for Russian Cinema Day. According to one of its participants, filmmaker Alexei German, “the main flow of modern films hitting the screen can be divided into 4-5 categories.”
“Movies, in which the main character avenges the death of someone, or chases money, good or bad cop movies, films about someone who saves a city or country, and finally, films about fights. And then we wonder about the reasons of cruelty of adolescents. Our audiences are addicted to cheep shows and to popcorn,” says German.
His colleague, filmmaker Alexander Sokurov, in a conversation with journalists voiced this question: “How can we celebrate something in this humiliating situation? No Russia-made movies can be seen.”
“The state does not support the Lenfilm studios, although in recent years it still produced ten titles,” Sokurov said. “I worked at this studio for over 30 years, and it may cease to exist.”
He was echoed by film director, screenwriter, producer Andrei Malyukov. “Lenfilm is dear to the whole country. It should not be lost. As long as there is no national project, there will be no normal production. But I hope that a way out will be found and the people will see the best domestic films.”
According to the president of the guild of filmmakers Marlen Khutsiyev, “cinematography is an important aspect of the nation’s life.”
“It contributes to education and enlightenment, it gives aesthetic pleasure. The government must understand this and help,” he said.