Digimart - Take 1 : Global Digital Distribution Summit
Digimart - Take 1
Global Digital Distribution Summit
Nargisse Rafik, June 22, 2006
Cinematography, while it may be the seventh art, is also an industry confronted by many challenges; technology, financing, public taste, and, of course accessibility to the works themselves. Distribution is at the heart of the matter for both cinematographic and audiovisual productions. What is at stake for film-goers is no less than the future of independent film.

Montreal has always been at the forefront of avant-garde technology and creativity in the film industry. Norman McLaren’s innovative and abstract films of the 1940s with the National Film Board; Pixar’s production of Toy Story, the first completely computer- generated film in the 80s; and the emergence of visual effects technology by Softimage in the 90s secured Montréal’s place on the big screen. So it is fitting that Montreal and, more particularly Ex-Centris, will host DIGIMART, the first digital marketplace of its kind. The Ex-Centris complex, opened in 1999, was conceived as a digital technology lab by Softimage’s founder, Daniel Langlois.  Under the direction of Sheila de la Varende, this event aims to expand business opportunities and models, and to establish partnerships in production, distribution and management of digital films.  Professionals, innovators and creative artists from around the world have been invited to this premiere event to share experiences and exchange ideas.

This event is taking place at a period of some tension in the industry. Both digital film production and post-production are better and less costly owing to the availability of new High Definition equipment. So even while independent films have succeeded in being competitive in production costs, they have not succeeded in reaching the public since the classic distribution networks rely on 35 mm film. To address this situation, major efforts have been made over the last five years to both promote and regulate digital film distribution. The European Digital Camera Forum (EDCF), and the American Digital Camera Initiative (DCI) have led the establishment of standards and security measures for those public and private producers who are trying to bring digital distribution to many countries, including IChina and India, the world’s largest film producer.

DIGIMART’S Global Digital Distribution Summit launched premieres in Montreal (2005, September 21-24) in collaboration with the New Montreal FilmFest (2005, September 18-25).  DIGIMARTconfirmed Montreal’s role as a major player in cutting-edge digital technology and a leader in the profession’s future.

DIGIMART - Second release: October 16- 18, 2006