Maureen Prins • Distributor, Solar World Cinema
Cineuropa: Tell us a little bit about Solar World Cinema. What are the project’s main goals and how has it evolved since its creation?
Maureen Prins: Solar World Cinema [SWC] organizes film screenings in a mobile cinema powered completely by solar energy. It brings new films to unconventional places. Solar World Cinema presents open-air screenings of films, documentaries and audiovisual programmes in cooperation with film festivals, filmmakers, film schools, NGOs and individual initiatives.
SWC was started as an association in 2010, to develop the concept of the solar-powered cinema internationally – following the Dutch example, CosyMo’s Solar Cinema. The Dutch solar-powered cinema has been working successfully since 2006 and we had the desire to take the concept abroad. By this I mean developing traveling film tours throughout Europe, creating a new network of partners and also developing a similar solar-powered cinema in Latin America. In association with a newly formed Latin America mobile cinema network, we want to enhance cooperation between Europe and Latin America. The Latin America solar cinema will start a “cross-border” Latin American tour at the end of 2011.
We hope to initiate the creation of an international network of mobile (solar-powered) cinemas that shares ideas, concepts and create a constant exchange of films and other audiovisual programmes. To enhance the distribution of new films and take films to unusual places, bringing them close to a local audience.
As a sort of an alternative exhibitor, how do you relate to new digital platforms?
The digital platform, Internet and video databases are very interesting for us, we can easily find programmes and search for little films that are suitable for our screenings. At the moment we are still only screening from DVD or Blu-ray, as our equipment has to be suitable for the solar-powered system (power consumption being the main focus here).
Are you establishing partnerships in Europe to promote Latin-America cinema?
Yes, as we are touring extensively with the solar cinema throughout Europe. We are constantly enhancing our network of partners and introducing more and more Latin American films, mainly in our shorts programme named Go Greener Shorts. But with the development of the Latin American Solar Cinema, which can tour simultaneously as the European Solar Cinema, I think in the future we will focus more on projects that promote Latin American films in Europe and European films in Latin America.
What do you expect from the CinemaLab workshops?
To enhance my network, both between Latin American participants/trainers and European participants/trainers; to develop new ideas and projects to enhance my own project; and create more alternative forms of distribution.
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