Develop cinemas to help filmmakers tell impactful stories

By Ernest Nutsugah

Accra, Nov. 16, GNA – Mr John Schreiner, Senior Vice President, Theater Development at IMAX Corporation, has encouraged stakeholders in the private and public sector to establish more cinemas to enable African filmmakers to share impactful stories.

He said movie theaters should be seen as “community assets” with educational and economic benefits for individuals and businesses in localities where they were sited.

Speaking at the Africa Cinema Summit held in Accra, he noted that there were lots of stories to be told in Africa and filmmakers needed a place to tell those stories.

He made reference to studies conducted by the British Film Institute on the economic value of cinemas in the United Kingdom (UK), which established that a substantial amount of revenue had been generated through other economic activities around cinemas.

He maintained that cinemas could serve as “cultural destinations” especially in Africa where there are “amazing stories” to tell, adding that there was power in educational movies shown in cinemas.

The three-day summit, organised by the National Film Authority together with FilmHouse Group and Silverbird Cinemas, brought together stakeholders in the cinema industry across Africa to deliberate on challenges and the opportunities within the sector.

Chief Executive Officer of the National Film Authority, Julliet Asante, said the initiative was part of efforts to grow the sector, and expressed confidence that the deliberations would help address the various challenges in the sector.

Commending key players in the sector, she called for additional investment in the cinema business, adding that more young people should be encouraged within the space to help sustain the cinema-going culture in Africa.

The forum included exhibitions and panel discussion on investment, the future of cinemas, as well as creating insightful content and telling compelling stories.