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INDUSTRY Hungary

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Open letter to friends of Hungarian cinema

by Fabien Lemercier

08/02/2011

Open letter to friends of Hungarian cinema

Film directors Ildikó Enyedi, Benedek Fliegauf, Szabolcs Hajdú, Miklós Jancsó, Ágnes Kocsis, Márta Mészáros, Kornél Mundruczó, György Pálfi and Béla Tarr have published an open letter to friends of Hungarian cinema. Highlighting what they see as threats to the diversity of Hungarian films, they refer in particular (without naming the person concerned) to the Hungarian Prime Minister’s recent year-long appointment of producer Andrew G. Vajna as government commissioner for the film industry with the task of strengthening the sector’s competitiveness. Below is their statement in full:

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"Culture is a fundamental human right! Hungary’s films and film industry are an integral part of European culture. Hungarian films look at Hungarians and their life in an original and unique way. These works of art use a distinctive and autonomous artistic language to tell the world about the country and its destiny. Ruining that means destroying culture! And this can’t be justified by utilitarianism, by a false interpretation of the economic situation, by political intention or subjective opinion. The Hungarian government has decided to replace a democratic and independent autonomous structure safeguarding the plurality of Hungarian films with a system where a single person makes the decisions.”

“In our opinion, this decision jeopardises the diversity of Hungarian films which prevailed until now. We, Hungarian filmmakers, would like to continue to be committed and truthful in our vocation and continue to work in harmony with the best of our abilities and convictions, with responsibility and honour. We thus ask everyone to support the survival of Hungarian cinema’s many-voicedness!"

The following artists and professionals have already expressed their support for the text:
Theo Angelopoulos – Greece
Olivier Assayas – France
Bertrand Bonello – France
Leon Cakoff – Brazil
Alfonso Cuaron – Mexico
Luc Dardenne – Belgium
Jean-Pierre Dardenne – Belgium
Arnaud Desplechin – France
Jacques Doillon – France
Marion Döring – Germany
Atom Egoyan – Canada
Amat Escalante –Mexico
Jean-Michel Frodon – France
John Gianvito – USA
Erika Gregor – Germany
Ulrich Gregor – Germany
Joana Hadjithomas – Lebanon
Michael Haneke – Austria
Alejandro Hartmann – Argentina
Shozo Ichiyama – Japan
Khalil Joreige – Lebanon
Aki Kaurismaki – Finland
Stella Kavadatou – Greece
Vassilis Konstandopoulos –Greece
Mia Hansen Love – France
Wojciech Marczewski – Poland
Cristian Mungiu – Romania
Celina Murga – Argentina
Olivier Père – France
Timothy Quay – United Kingdom
Stephen Quay – United Kingdom
Carlos Reygadas –Mexico
Arturo Ripstein – Mexico
Daniel Rosenfeld – Argentina
Gus van Sant – United States
Uli M Schueppel – Germany
Ulrich Seidl – Austria
Hanna Schygulla – Germany
Tilda Swinton – United Kingdom
Juan Villegas – Argentina
Peter Watkins – United Kingdom
Andrzej Wajda – Poland

(Translated from French)

Stockholm University of the Arts
 

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