'One Day on Earth' has global screenings


With no immediate news to link ShowCanada to this column, let’s start this month’s European column with an update of global proportions. A feature-length documentary film that captures scenes from every country in the world—all in one day on Oct. 10, 2010—was screened in 160 countries on this past Earth Day (www.onedayonearth.org). Theatres were filled to capacity from Andorra to Zimbabwe, organizers at the United Nations Development Programme noted (www.undp.org). Screenings were held in places such as the main square of Katmandu, the French Institute in Kabul, Sierra Leone’s only cinema (www.cruzercinema.com), Grauman’s Chinese in Hollywood, and the UN General Assembly in New York City.

Project funders included The Ford Foundation’s JustFilms Initiative. UNDP offices in more than 95 countries participated in and contributed to the filming, and the Development Programme has now extended its support through 2015. Since the premiere showing, filmmakers Kyle Ruddick and Brandon Litman received numerous requests for additional screenings worldwide. U.S. audiences can “Bring the Movies YOU Want to Your Local Theater” by creating their own showing for One Day on Earth at www.Tugg.com.

Spotlight on EcoFocus
Staying in Earth Day mode for a moment, we now report from Pepcom’s EcoFocus at Manhattan’s Metropolitan Pavilion. From Clean Ocean Action and Climate Counts to Moms’ Clean Air Force, exhibitors presented many worthy causes and ideas for Eco Geek Living. Cool and clever products included the nPower PEG (Personal Energy Generator), the world’s first passive kinetic energy harvester and charger for hand-held electronics. And Ed Solar is a truly affordable solar book light by Nokero (“No Kerosine”). The company teamed up with Child Fund International, among others, to bring light to kids to live by and learn with. To see how it works, click here, and for options how to help, please go here.

As this event took place in New York City, many other favorite ideas were local. NYC WasteMatch is a free service for anyone who is looking to donate anything in the Big Apple, while Build It Green!NYC is the only nonprofit retail outlet for salvaged and surplus building materials. Diverting 900 tons of building materials from the landfill, they provided $250,000 of material support to other nonprofit and arts organizations in 2011 alone. And in our industry, Film Biz Recycling does just that, by running the world’s only nonprofit prop shop and creative re-use center where entertainment industry waste and surplus are turned into “socially and environmentally responsible solutions.” More to come.

Teaming Up for TMT
On May 22 and 23, IHS hosted its 2012 European Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT) Summit in Paris (www.ihs.com). The “premier gathering place for representatives of hundreds of the world’s leading companies” presented the combined research analysis and expertise from IHS subsidiaries iSuppli and Screen Digest. Featured in April’s FJI Cinema Advertising edition, senior principal analyst Daniel Knapp presented “Advertising: The Shift from Traditional to Digital” during the summit. Most promising panel session? “How Technology Evolution in Handsets and Tablets Enables New Use Cases and Business Models.” On that subject, Kari Kulojärvi, senior VP at Nokia in charge of smart devices, delivered a keynote presentation on the future of the TMT sector.

SmartJog Doubles Digital Delivery

In a multi-year agreement with Intelsat S.A., managed digital-cinema distribution service provider SmartJog will utilize a second full-time satellite transponder. “We will have an aggregated throughput of 140 Mbps available for delivery to cinemas,” explained Jean-Sebastien Petit, CEO of SmartJog. “This will enable speedy delivery of four to six large feature film DCPs per day, at an average of 60 gigabits per hour.” Currently, SmartJog delivers an average of 40,000 Digital Cinema Packages each month via Intelsat 905 to its network of more than 800 cinemas and 3,000 screens in 13 European countries (www.smartjog.com).
In Russia and CIS, CineLab has joined SmartJog’s cloud-based delivery and management solutions after a successful pilot phase. Several multicasts of feature films were brought to cinemas connected to the CineLab Data Delivery Network, which already includes over 200 cinema sites and 436 screens (www.cinelab.ru/english).

Cinema City Constant in Constanta
Cinema City International (www.cinemacity.nl) opened its 13th cinema in Romania on May 1 in the city of Constanta, bringing the country-wide number of screens to 122 in 11 cities. With eight halls and 1,174 seats, the Maritimo center site is “100% digital with maximum capacity for 3D projection,” according to the media release.

Cinema City’s chief executive officer Mooky Greidinger will continue to open new theatres in Romania despite “the slowdown in the real estate market,” he said. With 23 binding lease agreements signed for cinemas in shopping centers there, and openings scheduled mainly from 2012 to 2014, Greidinger strongly believes that “the top quality of our multiplexes and the best client service will bring…enthusiastic audiences.” In 2011, Romanian operations were up 20.3%, generating €21.8 million (US$28.63 mil.) on 3.7 million tickets sold (20.5% over 2010). The next opening in Romania is scheduled in Pitesti during the fourth quarter of 2012.

Kinepolis Releases Corporate Reports
In a “notice to shareholders, journalists, staff, cinema aficionados, partners and other relations,” pan-European exhibitor Kinepolis Group published its 2011 annual report. In addition to the required fiscal information, the Group also published a new corporate brochure “highlighting the company’s mission and strategy, its staff, its core activities and many other aspects of life in the Group.”

3D Partnership Announced
The International 3D Society (I3DS) selected 3D Stereo MEDIA’s (3DSM) annual event in Liège, Belgium, to bestow dedicated European 3D Creative Arts Awards during the Dec. 6 ceremony. The two groups will collaborate closely to organize the first competition of I3DS on European soil in about 15 categories. During NAB 2012 in Las Vegas, the Society also announced the formation of the I3DS Europe Committee with the goal of facilitating “an acceleration of the development” of stereoscopic-3D art, technology and content in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa (www.international3dsociety.com).

From Dec. 3 to 6 and for the fourth time, 3D Stereo MEDIA offers a professional and a scientific conference, along with a 3D film festival. With the support of the MEDIA Program of the European Commission, 3DSM also hosts the second edition of its 3D co-production Film Mart. For more information, check out www.3dstereomedia.eu.