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Art House Cinema calls for Netflix Ban in Venice competition lineup

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The International Confederation of Art Cinemas, CICAE, has called for a ban on films backed by Netflix to be screened at the Venice Film Festival as part of the festival’s official competition.

In a statement released on Monday by CICAE, the association called on Venice Film Festival director, Alberto Barbera to reserve competition slots for Netflix films. This follows the withdrawal of Netflix Films from competition at this year’s  Cannes Film Festival, which was keenly protested by French distributors.

“Earlier this year, Thierry Fremaux, director of the Cannes Film Festival, set an example and took the side of art cinemas and decided to exclude films without a theatrical release in France from competition. A prestigious film festival allowing in its official selection lineup titles that will not be seen on the big screen internationally encourages practices that endanger an important sector of the film industry. Cinema and television are  different mediums and cinematic films are made to be seen according to high-quality standards on the big screen,” CICAE said in a statement.

Venice has however come out clearly on the side of Netflix in the protest. The festival has six of Netflix films in the competition line-up with four already premiered and Paul Greengrass’ terror drama 22 July yet to have its debut at the festival on Wednesday.

The upcoming Toronto International Film Festival has followed suit, programming a total of seven Netflix films, including David  Mackenzie’s Scottish period epic, Outlaw King, which will open the festival.

Submitted by: Larry Adams

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