French, German groups ink digital deal


PARIS -- France's Center National de la Cinematographie and Germany's Filmforderungsanstalt have signed a joint declaration urging the digitization of films in cinemas across the continent.

The agreement gives priority to European films and aims to establish standards of quality and security for digital screenings, in addition to the uniformity of technology among movie theaters.

"These positions are founded upon the particular conception that we share in Europe, that of cinema as an artistic expression whose diversity and creative independence need to be preserved in the move to digital," the groups said in a statement.

The CNC and the FFA have invited national film organizations all over Europe, in addition to the European Commission, to join their "desire to strengthen the European film industry."

The new initiative was the topic du jour at Monday's European Agency Film Directors meeting at the San Sebastian Film Festival.

The CNC-FFA alliance will be reassessed at the Franco-German "Rendez-Vous" in Versailles on Nov. 22.