New EBU Position paper on MEDIA funding to European film industry: Promote Equal Access to Culture for Persons with Visual Impairments in the EU


EBU appreciates that the European Union has supported the production and distribution of fiction and documentary projects for cinema and for television with around 2.6 billion € since 1991 through the MEDIA sub-programme. Numerous awards for films funded by this action testify to their value for Europe. MEDIA supports the distribution of more than 400 films each year and the development of 200 films and series per year. It is a positive sign for the European public sphere that this funding has steadily increased until now. It is also a positive sign that the costs of audio description, like those of dubbing or subtitling, are eligible costs.

Yet, funding under MEDIA supports films that fail to include blind and partially sighted persons.

This paper focuses on EU, i.e. Creative Europe / MEDIA funding of the European film industry. We do not ignore that MEDIA intervenes only where there is an EU added-value, and that Member States have a primary role in funding of the industry, often with larger financial capacities. In fact, EBU will coordinate representations by its member organisations at national level as well. However, we argue that MEDIA can contribute to the awareness of audio description and audio subtitling among film producers as an element of accessibility for blind and partially sighted persons.

This document is available in pdf and word format.