The first meeting of Writers & Directors Worldwide took place on the 7/8 of October in Mexico City at the invitation of the Mexican authors’ societies DIRECTORES and SOGEM. It was a great success, both in terms of participation and in the quality of debates and meetings. Authors from Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia Pacific marked their commitment and determination to unite globally, further drive the recognition of their rights and to make their voices heard more.
During these two days, participants were able to discover the incredible vitality of the Mexican audiovisual industry and see first hand, the cultural activities conducted by local authors’ societies to promote the emergence of new talent. An afternoon at the National Cinematheque allowed Mexican and foreign filmmakers to share their experiences and their vision of the future.
The discussion then focused on the projects supported by Writers & Directors Worldwide members. This included the creation of ADAL, an alliance of Argentinian, Mexican, Chilean and Colombian filmmakers, as well as the admission as a provisional CISAC member of DASC, the new Colombian directors society. One of the flagship projects of Writers & Directors Worldwide is to support the just struggle of Brazilian directors and screenwriters to achieve recognition of their right to compensation for any use of their works. A large step forward here was announced by representatives of ABRACI, the association of Brazilian filmmakers, with news of their official invite to join ADAL.
The Day of ¡ACCIÓN!
Another highlight was the presentation of the day of “¡ACCIÓN!” by directors and writers which took place a few days later. On the 14th of October the Vice President of CISAC, Argentine director Marcelo Piñeyro, and CISAC’s regional director Santiago Schuster, led a large delegation of international filmmakers to the Cultural Center of La Moneda Palace in Santiago, Chile. We are pleased to announce that it was a great success.
Organised by ATN Chile, ADAL and with the support of Argentine authors DAC and ARGENTORES, SGAE from Spain, Writers & Directors Worldwide and CISAC, the day saw more than a hundred directors and writers attend to support the bill for recognition of their rights. The delegation of Chilean authors was led by director Ricardo Larraín and was received, along with the international delegation, by Chilean President Michelle Bachelet. The President promised to submit the bill to parliament before the end of the year.
Another important success was the presence in Mexico of the young Senegalese director Angèle Diabang, recently elected president of the new Senegalese collective management society. She described the situation in Senegal and in Africa more widely and Writers & Directors Worldwide pledged support for the various initiatives of African authors. As well as private copying, this includes working to unite authors from across the continent via a project supported by the Portuguese society SPA and WIPO.
Other debates and meetings during the Mexico congress included a presentation on ‘Women Directors in Television” from Delyth Thomas of Directors UK. An involved discussion ensued about the role of women in audiovisual creation.
This first international meeting of Writers & Directors Worldwide concluded with active discussion and approval of the various development projects presented by chairman Yves Nilly, particularly those focused on Eastern Europe and Asia-Pacific. In addition the organisation published the “Mexico Manifesto“, a document calling on governments around the world to ensure by law the right to remuneration of authors and directors for any use of their works.