Tasks and Aims

The Austrian Film Institute (Österreichisches Filminstitut) is a national film funding agency which supports cinema productions as a cultural product as well as the Austrian film business and thus contributes to strengthening the Austrian film industry and the creative and artistic qualities of Austrian film to ensure its domestic and international success. It is a legal entity under public law and its registered office is located in Vienna. The financial year of the Austrian Film Institute is the calendar year.

Aims and Areas of Funding

Film funding aims at

1) a) contributing to the preservation of the common cultural heritage of Europe and the further development of European culture with its national and regional diversity in special consideration of the Austrian identity,
b) supporting the production, dissemination and marketing of Austrian films which are suitable to enhance the quality, autonomy and cultural identity of the Austrian film sector,
c) supporting the cultural, economic and international interests of the Austrian film industry, especially by measures aimed at developing new talent and through the publication of an annual film industry report,
d) improving the international orientation of Austrian film and thus improving the basis for the dissemination and market-oriented exploitation of Austrian films in Austria as well as its cultural impact and its exploitation abroad, particularly by supporting the presentation of Austrian film domestically and abroad,
e) supporting Austrian-foreign co-productions,
f) supporting co-operation between the film industry and television providers to strengthen Austrian cinema films,
g) working towards a harmonisation and coordination of film funding between the Federal and Länder levels (regional funding).

2) The Film Institute has the task of taking appropriate measures to realize the aims listed in para. 1, particularly through granting funding in line with available funds based on a selection process or by providing technical or organisational assistance within the context of its activities as a centre of competence. For this purpose, the Film Institute supports in particular the production of films on basis of projects (selective funding) or on basis of performance (‘reference film funding’). In addition, the Film Institute can contribute to supporting measures taken by third parties, provided this does not involve Film Institute funds. This also applies to measures in the area of film arising from Austria’s membership of international and supranational organisations. Furthermore, the Film Institute has the task of advising the Federal Government and other public bodies on central issues relating to Austrian film, particularly with a view to attending to the cultural and economic interests of the film industry and harmonising measures in the area of film within and outside of the European Union.

3) For the support of film production on project basis (‘selective funding’), undertakings with cultural content shall be selected which promise artistic and/or economic success or which comply with the objectives of new talent development. New talent development measures are designed to facilitate entry into the professional cinematic art.

4) To receive production support on performance basis (‘automatic funding’), the producer of a film with cultural content with a minimum length must have produced a ‘reference film’ that has achieved artistic or economic success.

a) A film is considered artistically successful if it has been selected for participation in or awarded a prize by an internationally significant film festival (list of festivals) as stated in the Funding Guidelines (§ 14).
b) A film is considered economically successful if it has achieved the admissions in Austrian cinemas as laid down by the Funding Guidelines (§ 14).
c) Less demanding funding requirements, particularly lower admission requirements, apply to children’s films, documentaries and new talent films as laid down by the Funding Guidelines (§ 14). New talent films are the first two films in which a director assumes directing responsibility for a cinema film.
d) For documentaries and children’s films the determination of audience response can be based on admissions determined over an extended period after first screening in a domestic cinema in case of a reasoned request by the producer. The duration of this extended observation period shall be determined by the Funding Guidelines (§ 14).
e) For documentaries and children’s films admissions at non-professional exhibition sites shall be taken into consideration in accordance with the provisions of the Funding Guidelines (§ 14).
f) In the preparation of the list of internationally significant film festivals, festival practice with regard to documentaries and children’s films shall be sufficiently taken into consideration.

5) Areas of funding are:
a) Script development;
b) Project development;
c) Production of Austrian films produced by Austrian producers under their own responsibility and international co-productions with Austrian participation;
d) Exploitation of Austrian films and films equated to Austrian films;
e) Continuous vocational training of professionals working in the area of film in creative, technical or commercial positions.

6) The Film Institute shall fulfil its tasks in compliance with the principles of efficiency, effectiveness and economy.

7) There is no legal entitlement to receive funding. The Film Institute shall only grant funding if special requirements and professional pre-conditions are fulfilled.