After town cinemas disappeared off the cultural map of Croatia and cinema operations were completely taken over by multiplexes opened in almost all larger cities, the last ten or so years saw a revitalisation of old town cinemas. Gathered under the independent cinema digitisation umbrella which built the infrastructural foundations for survival and programme development, independent Croatian cinemas expressed a need and wish for networking and collaboration in terms of programme, training and promotion. At the first independent cinema congress in August 2014 in Zadar, the common decision of establishing the Cinema Network was reached, and on 7 November, at the general assembly in Zagreb, the Croatian Independent Cinemas Network was founded.
It was founded by 27 cinema exibitors from 24 cities and towns with the aim of strengthening the position of independent cinemas within the film industry and launching and developing film culture in all its forms across Croatia. The Network core activities are connecting and exchanging programmes of outstanding artistic, cultural and historical value, breeding informed audiences of all categories with a focus on educating children and young people about film, continuous training of its members in marketing, organisation, technology and programme matters, and promotion and proactive involvement in terms of local, national and European cultural policies.
The establishment of Croatian Independent Cinemas Network is an important step in further development of film industry in Croatia. Network members maintain a high level of infrastructural and technological capacities and meet all the modern-day standards. The Network and its activities will try to make the best out of this infrastructure to the benefit of citizens and visitors from all over the world.
On this day (17 July 2017.) Cinema Network has 39 members, 52 cinemas in 39 cities and islands all over country.
Independent cinemas conduct a public duty based on their status as public institutions, artistic organisations or missions they designed for themselves. This public duty can be defined as promotion of film as a work of art, representing film culture in educational programmes, critical and reflexive approach, and catering to the cinema-related needs of local film production. This is why such entities need to develop strategies based not only on commercial approach and find sustainable models to maintain their core direction and public function. It is important to point out that in many parts of our country independent cinemas are some of the rare cultural establishments and are, as such, an invaluable part of a certain environment’s public and cultural life. Subsequently, continuous and good film programmes in these environments are indispensable and have a significant impact on the quality of life in local communities.
The Network’s scope is culture and art, with a focus on audiovisual and media culture, audiovisual industry and cinema operations.
Cinema Network is a non-profit organisation registered on 17 February 2015 at the City of Zagreb Office for General Administration. The Network’s activities are supported by the Croatian Audiovisual Centre, Foundation Kultura Nova and City of Zagreb.