The goal of The Finnish Film Foundation is to support diverse and accessible film culture and a fair and equal working environment within the film industry. Ecologically and socially sustainable film sector will remain viable in the future. The aim is an innovative, interesting film culture that speaks to a wide range of audiences.
Accessible film culture
At its simplest, accessibility within the film industry means that different groups of people, regardless of their background, can participate in the making of films and the enjoyment of film culture.
The availability of audio description and subtitling for the hearing impaired are required of films receiving marketing and distribution support from The Finnish Film Foundation. The Foundation also gives support for producing audio description and subtitles for the hearing impaired.
Film audio descriptions for the visually impaired can be listened to via the MovieReading app, which can be downloaded to a mobile phone. There are also films with audio description available in Yle Areena.
Cinema-owners can apply for cinema equipment and modernization support in order to improve the cinema’s accessibility through renovations.
At the end of 2020, an accessibility guide for cinemas, prepared in cooperation with different disability organisations, will be published.
The website of the Culture for All contains information and tools to promote the accessibility of cultural services.
Parity and equality
In accordance with the strategy of the Finnish Film Foundation, we promote equality by supporting different filmmaker groups equally.
Statistics on the diversity of filmmaker groups are collected by means of a production report, which is submitted for all films and series that have received a production grant from the Film Foundation (starting from 2020). The production report also provides information on the diversity of the characters seen in the films and series.
We publish statistics, among other things, on gender equality in different filmmaker groups in the yearly published Facts & Figures. In the coming years, the results from the production report on the diversity of cast and crew as well as representation on screen will also be included in the publication.
We train our staff to recognize their biases and to promote inclusion and diversity in their work. We have published our safer space guidelines.
We are one of the partners of New Dawn, a film fund promoting inclusion and equality. The fund grants production support to feature-legth fiction and documentary projects from filmmakers from discriminated groups.
WIFT Finland is building an equality tool for the Finnish film industry, for which it received our support for the promotion of other film culture. The tool will be launched in late 2023.
We are a collaborator of the Academy of Moving People and Images training project, which aims to help mobile people and under-represented cultural groups in the Finnish film industry to enter the sector.
Finnish Film Foundation annually supports the activities of the International Sámi Film Institute with a grant from the Ministry of Education and Culture. The Institute has published guidelines for filmmakers interested in working with the Sámi people or culture:
Diversity in the Film Industry
During the spring of 2021, we commissioned articles from various writers, inviting them to examine the issues of diversity and equality in the Finnish film industry.
Occupational health and safety
Projects that have received production support from the Foundation are required to comply with Finnish occupational health and safety legislation.
A precondition for production support is that the recipient provides assurance that the production crew and their supervisors have been given clear instructions on how to proceed when encountering possible harassment or unacceptable behaviour. A description of the method used to provide the crew and their supervisors with these instructions must also be presented.
The Centre for Occupational Safety has resources for securing safe and healthy working conditions:
The Ministry of Education and Culture commissioned ethical guidelines for the arts and culture sector from Forum Artis, the national co-operation organ for Finnish artists’ associations. Finnish Film Foundation was interviewed in the process. The guidelines were published in March 2023.
Preventing sexual harassment
The Finnish Film Foundation was involved in publishing the guidelines prepared in collaboration by several organisations for the prevention of sexual harassment in our industry. The guidelines were delivered to the production companies and are available free of charge in Finnish, Swedish and English.
Doing intimate scenes in camerawork
In the autumn of 2020, we published the guidelines prepared by actor Saara Kotkaniemi for doing intimate scenes in camera work. The guidelines include practical recommendations and instructions for actors, directors, producers and other crew members. The guidelines are based on a report for which Kotkaniemi interviewed 40 actors and 20 directors.
To complement the guidelines, instructions on working with an intimacy coordinator were published in the summer of 2021. They are written by intimacy coordinator Pia Rickman.
We are committed to the principles of sustainable development in our own operations. Finnish Film Foundation uses the EcoCompass environmental management system. We are members in the Nordic film institutes’ Nordic Sustainability Working Group which tracks and shares knowledge about the environmental sustainability work in the Nordic countries and internationally.
In August 2020, we carried out the first ecological survey aimed at production companies, the purpose of which is to create an environmental awareness and performance indicator for the sector.
Environmentally sustainable audiovisual production
The Foundation participates in the Green Round Table convened by Audiovisual Producers Finland APFI. The round-table sessions of different stakeholders negotiate on common policies for the audiovisual sector that promote environmentally sustainable production.
APFI has launched a project that will develop an environmental strategy for the industry as well as provide a concrete tool for measuring the environmental footprint of productions. For the project, APFI received our support for the promotion of other film culture in the spring of 2021. The following year, the environmental system albert was launched in Finland.
In 2019, AVEK, APFI and Aalto University published the Ekosetti guidebook, which describes in practical terms how to reduce the environmental footprint of audiovisual productions.
The Finnish Lapland Film Commission has produced its own guidebook for productions filming in Lapland.
Ecology in cinemas
An eco-guidebook (in Finnish) for cinemas was published in 2021 by Creative Export Innovations, with support from the Foundation.
Tell us about interesting sustainability projects
Are you aware of a project, seminar or publication related to the environmental footprint of the film industry? We are happy to share information on reducing the environmental impact of the industry in our communication channels. Tips can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.