Sofia Lab 2019

13-16 March 2019


Sustainable strategies to growing your organisation and audiences

Sofia Lab 2019

Join this lab to meet cinema practitioners from a diverse range of national contexts and exchange expertise in building audiences for films at the cinema and beyond. Led by Madeleine Probst (Vice-President of Europa Cinemas and Managing Producer, Watershed, Bristol, United Kingdom) together with Frédéric Cornet (Director, Programmer and Distributor, Cinema Galeries, Brussels, Belgium) and Marijana Bosniak (Director and Programmer, Kino Urania, Osijek, Croatia), it is a great opportunity to share current thinking and practical solutions.

The focus of this year’s lab is on sustainable strategies whether that's building audiences, designing experiences, developing staff or managing buildings more greenly and efficiently. The lab is a great opportunity to share current thinking, find inspiration and practical solutions to some of the big questions facing the cinema sector such as: how to meet the needs of the present without compromising the longer term future? How to unlock the potential of the people within your organisation to build a more resilient business and more meaningful engagement with your wider community? How to get better insights into the people that already come to your cinema and those that don’t in order to connect with them more effectively? And with the current rise of activism and shifts in the wider social, cultural and political landscape, is there an opportunity to reinvigorate the cinema’s role in creating inclusive spaces for challenging conversations?


Headline topics include:

• Getting better audience insights towards more meaningful and sustainable communications strategies,

• Making your organisation more resilient and relevant through sustainable practices,

• Creating inclusive spaces for challenging conversations,

• Making the most of your staff and community from inclusive practices and skills sharing to fundraising,

• Building a sustainable future through partnerships and networked practice.

Bring your ideas and issues to the Lab, step back from the day to day and spend time with cinema practitioners from a diverse range of national contexts to reflect on your practice, exchange expertise and find practical solutions to how cinemas can shape a more sustainable society.

Open Slot sessions also give participants the space to share a problem, pitch innovative ideas and/or identifying potential international collaborators for new projects.



This lab is open to all European exhibitors, members of Europa Cinemas network or not. The number of participants is limited to 30 people. Applications will be considered in the order they are received. However, priority will be given to exhibitors who never attended a Europa Cinemas Lab before and to exhibitors from Central and Eastern Europe and Balkan countries.



Please fill in the online application form.


Please note that the application deadline is the 31st January 2019.



1. TRAVEL: all travel costs to and from Sofia are at your charge. When booking, please try to arrive before 2.30 pm on Wednesday 13th of March and to leave on Sunday 17th morning. Please do not make any reservation until your participation is officially confirmed by Europa Cinemas.

2. ACCOMMODATION: you need to be there from Wednesday 13th to Sunday 17th March (4 nights). Europa Cinemas and the Sofia International Film Festival will cover the cost of 3 nights (single room incl. breakfast) for one person per exhibition company, the fourth night being at your charge.

For your information, the single room rate will be approximately 65 euros (including breakfast and taxes). We will let you know the name of the hotel and more practical details very soon. Europa Cinemas will handle the hotel reservations and will also cover the cost of some of the meals.

3. ACCREDITATION: the Sofia International Film Festival will provide a festival accreditation (free of charge) which will give you access to all festival screenings.

4. LANGUAGE: the discussions will be held in English over the whole lab.

For more information on the seminar, do not hesitate to contact:

Fatima Djoumer, Head of International Relations and Events

Tel. +49 30 61 40 22 00, e-mail:

Sonia Ragone, Italy & Malta Coordinator

Tel. +33 (0)1 42 71 12 43, e-mail:

Alexandre Tchernookov, Central and Eastern Europe Coordinator

Tel. +33 (0)1 42 71 83 62, e-mail: