FESPACO (the Panafrican Film and Television Festival of Ouagadougou) is celebrating its 40th anniversary February 28 to March 7 in partnership with the OIF (Organisation internationale de la Francophonie). The event presents African cinema of the future and invites film and television professionals from French-speaking countries in the southern hemisphere to rediscover the IMAGE program.
According to the OIF website, “OIF Director Clément Duhaime will speak at the inauguration of the International African Cinema Market on Saturday, February 28. He will be presenting the policy of the Francophonie’s IMAGE program as well as the concrete steps taken by Secretary General Abdou Diouf during the last edition of FESPACO. Through a fund aimed at promoting French-language audiovisual media in countries in the southern hemisphere, the OIF has become one of the main sources of funding for film and television production in developing French-speaking countries. Since its creation in 1988, the fund has supported over 1,400 film and television productions, at a rate of some 70 to 80 accepted projects annually.
In order to take advantage of the stock of images collected over twenty years through the fund, the OIF is initiating a new project involving the creation of a digital catalogue of images from the South. The goal is to encourage the distribution of audiovisual productions from the South by making existing works more accessible through an online catalogue. This tool will also promote exchanges between industry stakeholders in matters of the profession through online communities.
The OIF goes on to state that with its IMAGE program, it is taking a number of steps to support the audiovisual sector and promote cultural diversity. Professional meetings will be organized during the festival to present the suggested methods of support.”