Since I started to work on the development of Vent D’Est, I interacted with lots of people from the local cinema industry and I also managed to know many things about this sector, including the big challenges it faces now. In my opinion, beyond its lack of financing, the Romanian film industry has at least one problem: the young generations of actors and aspirers to a cinema career, know few things about the Romanian film and theater legends.
I found out about this topic in a discussion I had with a well-known actor and professor who teaches the new generations of actors. He also told me that he was very difficult for him to talk with his students about the Romanian movie legends because they don’t know pretty much of them. Having talked with this professor, one conclusion came through my mind: there is a great need for mentorship coming from the most experienced actors among the young generations of future actors because these senior actors had the opportunity to take acting lessons from the true legends. As a result of this mentorship, young actors could learn more about the history of the Romanian film and theater industries. Plus, they could keep alive the memory of those who wrote parte of the history of the Romanian culture.
And this wouldn’t be unusual or wrong at all, since all the countries around the world perform at promoting their cultural and artistic values and have the ability to transform them in national heroes both locally and globally. Yet, Romania needs to build its “culture of valorization” with lot of patience, in order for those who brought joy in the lives of our parents, grandparents or grand-grandparents -either actors, painters or musicians – to be in the right spotlight and always be remembered.
I think that the local cinema industry could play a major role in this direction. It can create content meant to recall local cultural personalities – and we have planty of them – and disseminate it to a wider audience. How could we want to be recognized and respected on the international scene if we do not do anything in this regard?
Last but not least, education is one of the major roles of the art in any society. According to international studies, encouraging and developing creativity, patience, emotional intelligence, language, communication and ability to have a holisic understanding are among the main benefits of the children who are exposed to the artistic world. Similar to stage plays, movies contribute to the personal development and education of the new generations in many ways, starting from the development of cognitive abilities and emotions, to critical thinking and an increased capacity to learn a foreign language.
In such a context, it is obvious that a production will reach kids too, in the end and it is well-known that movies are a potential source of idols and role-models for teenagers. This means that a movie is like a two-edged sword: it can have both a positive and a negative impact on the society as a whole. During my journey called Vent D’Est, I heard a lot of people complaining about the poor quality of the cinema productions while others saying that this was what the large audiences wanted. There are also opinators who say that the success is represented by a poor production with a cast comprised of influencers.
For certain, this is a normal stage in the development of the local cinema industry, shaped mainly by the emergence of the commercial productions. The same course took the local musical industry, too. Yet, I am convinced that things will change in time, but how would it be to try to shorten this phase? Afterall, it is us, too – the film makers – who are responsible to educate the society through high-quality content.