Some of Malta’s leading directors, actors and other professionals working in the film and production sector have banded together to launch a new campaign to better industry standards.
ĊelebrAZZJONI is a joint campaign by the Malta Producers Association (MPA) and the Malta Entertainment Industry and Arts Association MEIA, and features some of the most prominent people behind Maltese TV and film productions, including the talent behind productions such as Simshar, Limestone Cowboy and Is-Sriep Reġgħu Saru Velenużi.
“Taking the opportunity presented by the upcoming Malta Film Awards, actors, producers and crew members from across Maltese film and television, as well as the film servicing sector, have come together in this campaign to share their stories in order to raise awareness about the challenges faced by those working in film and TV in Malta,” they said in their announcement.
Some of the most prominent members of Malta’s film industry banded together in a new video, raising some of the key challenges they have faced – and continue to face – in Malta.
They aim to defend the Maltese film industry during a time of increasing dominance by global streamers like Netflix, when it’s more important than ever to have an adequate structure in place to support local productions.
Among their key points was the fact that Malta offers an attractive rebate for international productions shooting on the island – yet the national film fund remains “substandard” and nigh impossible to access.
Malta’s film fund is €600,000 over several years; by comparison, Iceland, a country with a similarly sized population, has a film budget of €10 million for 2022 alone… as well as an active co-production fund.
In 2019 alone, the small country of Latvia gave €5.7 million in funds to local producers.
The group noted that Malta’s infrastructure for local TV production remains “weak”, forcing Maltese productions into “precarious employment”.
Aside from funding, members spoke of a lack of respect for the industry’s professionals.
“I felt more respected when I worked as a barman than in this industry which is being constantly advertised as some multi-million dollar industry,” Matthew Maggi, assistant director and actor, said.
ĊelebrAZZJONI is calling for a “dedicated strategy” for indigenous films and TV productions, laying out five proposals they’ve sent to the Malta Film Commission.
- Removing Deminimis on Screen Malta
- Consultation on industry matters before they are set in stone
- Removal of the recoupment clause from Screen Malta contracts
- Working towards boosting content by increasing Screen Malta’s fund by a minimum of €400,000
- Working with the Ministry towards re-opening a revamped co-production fund in order to make the fund more accessible.
What do you make of the campaign’s proposals?