The second biggest film festival in Lithuania, European Film Forum Scanorama, launches an open call to its European short film competition Glimpses of Europe. Striving for gender balance, Scanorama will compose at least 50% of the final competition programme by films directed by women.
According to Le Lab Femmes de Cinéma, only one out of four directors today on average in Europe are women though 50% of film school graduates in 2019 were women. Film submission on FilmFreeway.com is open until the 14th of August to European filmmakers who have not yet debuted with a feature film and have directed no more than 3 short films.
“Cinema shapes our collective imagination: it participates in the construction of the society and at the same time reflects it. Screening the artists who push the boundaries of cinema as an artistic expression, we experience the loss of eloquent young female voices. While looking at the careers of our fourteen years winners, we noticed that most of the women had more than 5-year directing career gaps, some of them working as assistant directors, script supervisors or casting assistants, some completely blacking out from the film world. Classically, it reflected finishing film school with easier access to filmmaking resources. Though destiny and career paths are individual, we did not detect the recurring vanishing trend among male winners”, commented Grazina Arlickaite, the founder and the artistic director of European Film Forum Scanorama.
Glimpses of Europe, previously entitled New Baltic Cinema, has been known as a platform for emerging Lithuanian female directors. Among its previous participants and winners are Marija Kavtaradze, awarded as the best director at this year Sundance Film Festival (Slow, 2023); Austeja Urbaite, currently nominated in the best directing category at national Silver Crane awards (Remember to Blink, 2022); Dovile Sarutyte, whose feature debut (A Feature Film About Life, 2021) is currently competing at national Silver Crane awards best film category. Started in 2008 as a regional competition, in 2022 Scanorama’s short film competition opened up to the whole Europe.
This year’s international jury is composed of Sabine Gebetsroither, director of Crossing Europe Filmfestival Linz; Petter van Hoff, curator for the art event Hi-Lo, programmer of cinema and art program for the festival Into The Great Wide Open and screenwriter, film curator and film critic Anna Melikova, a member of the Berlinale Panorama selection committee. Established financial support to emerging European filmmakers is €8,000 euros.