سینمای کودکان

A film specialist from France believes that children’s cinema can provide minds of the youngsters with new horizons, through the provision of access to other cultures all around the world.

In an interview with the news headquarters of 31th Iran’s International Film Festival for Children and Youth, Gilles Lemounaud stressed the fact that cinema must not be restricted to a single region, referring to the instance of France in which quality is the main criterion in choosing movies shown to kids. Lemounaud has been a filmmaker since 1975, a producer since 1985, and an artistic director of ‘Festimaj’ International School Film Festival since 2004. The following are excerpts of the interview:

Reporter: What is the status of children and youth cinema in your country?

Lots of movies for children are produced each year in France.

How much do writers care about children in your country?

A lot of writers work for children movies in France, and we have special laws to protect youth cinema.

What do you know about Iran's children and youth cinema and in general the Iranian cinema?

In France, we know most of the popular filmmakers in Iran, but we don’t have a lot of information about youth cinema.

Cinema helps us better understand each other's life, and understanding our own world is one of the goals of life; how can cinema succeed in this respect?

A filmmaker is an artist with an ethic, and when he works for youth, he must respect this ethic.

To what extent do regional countries share common concerns about cinema?

I don't know about the region, but for example in Georgia, they have good filmmakers.

Tell us about the importance of hosting by Iran’s International Film Festival for Children and Youth in the Middle East?

It is very important, because education by cinema will increase understanding in the region, and of course in the world.

What do you think about children who are familiar with the culture of other countries in the International Film Festival for Children and Youth in Iran?

Cinema must be a free world, and children knowing other cultures will be more open-minded in the future, but no education leads to no future.

How in your country can filmmakers gain finance to produce their cinematic products?

Very difficult; we have a central agency, but the system cannot finance more than 100 movies, while over 700 movies are being produced each year.

How serious is the competition in children and youth cinema in your country?

Very serious; we have a lot of youth programs, festivals, and workshops for children, as well as special cinema education programs in schools and universities.

Is children and youth cinema highly welcomed in your country?

Yes, but we have a lot of problems with the cinema of the United States which produces plenty of movies with bad quality, filled with violence.

How do you assess the situation of Iranian cinema in the world?

We like the Iranian cinema, and it is well-known in a lot of countries.

How much is cinema helpful in preparation of children and youth as future adults?

Education is based on three fundamental factors: writing, reading, and counting, but the knowledge of news, the media, TV, smart phones, and social media with regard to cinema must be the fourth fundamental element.

How much does your government pay attention to the cinema of children and youth?

The French government is highly responsive, but they don't give the necessary money to developing this particular cinema.

In your country, are children attracted to watching movies produced by western countries or are mainly interested in nationally-oriented cinema?

A lot of children are open-minded in this field. We don't exclusively promote French cinema. We promote quality cinema.

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