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Brussels Breakfast meeting: Green in Cinema

Several times a year the Flemish Audiovisual Fund (VAF) organizes a special ‘Cinema breakfast’, an informal meeting for cinemas, distributors, festivals, cultural centers and other film organizations where new offers and initiatives are presented. The fifth edition was entirely devoted to sustainability and so Green Film Making was invited by our VAF colleague Tim Wagendorp to travel to a chilly Brussels last December 13th. The meeting started early and yet the venue Cinema Nova was packed with varied group of people from the cultural sector from all over Belgium. Many inspiring examples and initiatives were presented, including the cinema Lewes Depot (UK) founded by Dutchwoman Carmen Slijpen and the eco-strategy of Belgian pop temple Ancienne Belgique. We are pleased to report here on the informative morning with our southern neighbors. After a breakfast served on an edible napkin, VAFs sustainability coordinator Tim opened the meeting by inviting those present to actively think about taking steps within their own organization or company. It would for example be interesting to calculate exactly what the emission of one film screening is. He also said that the very successful recent Flemish production Girl by Lukas Dhont, that won the Camera d’Or in Cannes, was produced sustainably (a report will follow that we will publish here). After Tim, hostess Marie-Eve of Cinema Nova briefly explained their organization. It’s a unique institute in the field of cinema operators. The cinema runs on volunteers and also has side activities such as the distribution of forgotten films, the preservation of archives such as that of a former porn cinema and they also developed an open source software...

Bags from film banners at Eye Filmmuseum and Vue; Upcycling at it’s best!

Everyone knows the store at Eye Filmmuseum as the ultimate place for film lovers to shop. But besides that the popular shop, in the top 10 of the world’s best museum shops, has an exclusive collection on offer, shop manager Marjan Vos also innovates with sustainability. She set up a system in which used film banners can be upcycled into unique bags. She developed the bags together with sustainable bag maker Marie-José Hamers, who is now being contacted left and right for new collaborations. Among others cinema company Vue Cinemas joined in. We talked to initiator Marjan, artisan Marie-José and Diederieke van Herwijnen of Vue Cinemas about this wonderful initiative. Marjan, where did you get the idea to do something with the old film banners? Marjan: Reuse is in my blood, I was raised like that. I think it is a shame to throw something away that is still fine and has been only used so briefly. I was at a Patti Smith concert once and there the guitarist shouted: ‘Support your locals!!’. This inspired me to focus on local artisans and not on China. I was just in the process of setting up the shop at Eye Filmmuseum, so the bags were a logical step for me. It went really fast, I was tipped to contact Marie-José when I was looking for good craftspeople around Amsterdam. Her first test model was immediately right. Folded from one piece and voilà, a wonderful shopper! Marie-José: The shopper eventually became a classic and from there on I designed other accessories. I can cut two bags from one banner and from the...

Report GFM @ ADE Green 2018

Last edition of ADE Green, the Green Film Making team kept their eyes and ears open for new applications from the event world that can also be used on our sets. ADE Green is an annual conference on sustainability during the Amsterdam Dance Event. There were quite some familiar faces such as Tijl Couzij of Lab Vlieland and Paul Schurink of Green Events, who organised the panel on energy for the Municipality of Amsterdam. But especially at the ‘Six Innovation that will change the event industry‘ panel presented by Wilbert van der Kamp of Innofest, several interesting things caught our attention. Innofest tests the prototypes of various innovations at different Dutch festivals. For example, The Helia developed the ‘Sunflower‘, a parasol with solar panels with which you can charge your phone outdoors. It’s a nice reminder to think beyond the current limitations of what a certain type of material can do. Recently we also encountered this in the work of solar designer Marjan van Aubel. Imagine that solar energy can be generated in any kind of material, like in her project Current Window where glass is used to generate power. This way you are not dependent on a panel, but can for example use the housing of cameras and lighting gear or car exteriors to generate energy. If each device provides its own power, you do not need any outlet or generator anymore. But we digress. One of the presentators at the ADE Green panel was Peter Scheer from Semilla Sanitation Hubs, who with the beautiful slogan ‘Grow a seed with what you peed‘ goes a step further in...

Second season of Killing Eve partly shot in Amsterdam

The second season of the successful British series Killing Eve was partially shot in the capital last September, including scenes at the Rijksmuseum and the Red Light District. Killing Eve is about a security officer who tracks down a serial killer and is created by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, also known for the popular series Fleabag. The lead roles are played by Sarah Oh and Jodie Comer and this season there is a supporting role for Dutch actor Roeland Fernhout. The Dutch part of the production was in the hands of Topkapi Films, who try to run every production as sustainable as possible. No exception here. Production manager Chrissy van der Linden explains: The English crew had already received and was using resuable water bottles and so we also gave the Dutch crew a bottle as a crew gift. We asked the extras to bring their own water bottles and use them. Our caterer Suus en Binkie made sure that there were water tanks on the set, so that everyone could refill their bottles easily. We didn’t use a single plastic water bottle or disposable cup. Furthermore, we limited the printing of scripts and schedules as much as possible. Everything was sent digitally and also supposed to be viewed digitally via Dropbox. Because we only shot in the center of Amsterdam, we asked our crew to come by bike. Nobody could or was even able to come by car. For the extras there was a special shuttle from a parking lot outside the city center. Location manager Thijs Bolle adds: The crew really did their best to separate waste. We had...

If the shoe fits …: which clothing lines are really sustainable?

Photo: Fabrice Monteiro, from the series The Prophecy Every production faces this question, from the evening news to a period drama: how do you dress the talent in front of the camera in a sustainable way? We researched the state of affairs at various costume departments last year (report in Dutch). And this showed that renting, storing for reuse and buying second-hand made the sector already considerably sustainable. Renting is, of course, a form of reuse. Many special costumes are stored and reused and clothing is bought second-hand or even used from personal wardrobes because of limited budgets. But there obviously are situations where new items are purchased or custom made. Lead actors, for example, often have to wear a tailor-made costume of good quality. In these cases it is still difficult to know whether the entire supply chain of a garment is sustainable. And there is too little knowledge about which fabrics have been manufactured sustainably and which are absolutely not. So we rummaged in the back of the closet again and wondered: is it possible to work more sustainably in the fashion industry? What if you do not have the time to mill around flea markets or second-hand shops and have no space for storage? And which stores offer the most sustainable collections if you have to buy new? No Frills: A new sustainable fashion line The clothing industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. Most clothing is still made from materials that are not sustainably produced. The manufacturing process can also be much improved; the use of toxic chemicals as well as plastic packaging, massive...