"We are pleased to once again associate the European Parliament with the 10th edition of the Venice Days. An edition in two digits, which rewards the perseverance of those who wanted to create, as part of the longest running festival in the world, an event that annually pays attention to the innovations of world cinema and is renewed by the proposals that accompany the screenings. A space in which we share more and more films and authors: the most recent example, the winner of the LUX Prize 2012 Shun Li and the Poet by Andrea Segre, which was discovered by the Venice Days in 2011.
A section, directed with panache by Roberto Barzanti and Giorgio Gosetti, which looks carefully into independent cinema, and is confirmed as the ideal place to meet, talk, discuss. And this is one of the characteristics that reinforces the link with the Venice Days: as MEPs, our natural habitat is a place where we can debate. And in the Villa of the authors we have always diversity and stimulation for discussion - from directors to representatives of the categories of film professionals, from writers and musicians to the youngsters participating in the project “28 Times Cinema”.
The LUX Prize, the Venice Days and Europa Cinemas –in partnership with Cineuropa.org, have promoted a true cinematic Erasmus concentrated in 10 days. The project “28 Times Cinema” sees the participation of 28 young people from all the EU countries, aged between 18 and 25, who have in common the passion for cinema and the curiosity to find out a little of Europe in sharing this experience.
“28 Times Cinema” is in its fourth year, and is enhanced by an additional participant: for this new edition we are very proud to include in the project Croatia, which joined the European Union on July 1st this year. To be able to welcome a young man or a young woman from Croatia is a small but significant way to show the “beauty” of Europe and a tangible sign that the route of enlargement, integration and consolidation of peace in the EU is fundamental and compelling.
Cultural projects sometimes need to beat the landscape that policy paves: thanks to Venice, to the roots of the cinema of the Europa Cinemas network across the EU - and far beyond its political boundaries - and thanks to the passion of many young people for European cinema, each year we are given the opportunity to meet young people from all European countries, united by the feeling of belonging to Europe and their love of art. I am delighted to welcome the participant from Croatia.
This Parliament term is about to end and a new cycle will be inaugurated with the European elections of May 2014. I hope that the millions of Europeans entitled to vote will take the opportunity of this change, because these elections represent a first time that can change many things. Thanks to the Lisbon Treaty, the European Parliament has co-decision powers on some of the most relevant legislative issues, which increasingly touch our daily life. Taking part in the next European election is therefore a fundamental step forward to a more participative European democracy.
In recent years as Chairwoman of the Committee on Culture of the Parliament and together with many colleagues, I have worked to maintain or to increase the funding of the programs of cooperation and support for the creation of culture and audio-visual work, as well as exchange programs and training. The Parliament has heard and has fought against so much resistance, being the only institution that is the directed interpreter of the popular will. I wish that the dialogue instaured with the world of cinema and culture will continue to be fruitful in the next parliamentary term."
Doris Pack, Chairwoman of the Committee on Culture and Education of the European Parliament