ECOCINEMA: Battle against inequality in Latin America

The charm of outdoor cinema is gaining more and more relevance today: Not only does it break our routine but it is also the perfect excuse to share time with our friends and family in a way that traditional cinemas do not allow. A reason to this, are the entertainment possibilities that revolve around outdoor cinema, in which the members of the audience are able to interact with each other before sitting down to watch the movie. Plus, this type of event offers the option to watch movies with the perfect backdrop, what we have been able to witness throughout different sceneries like the magnificent Austrians alps, the imposing St. Mark´s Square in Venice, the idyllic beaches of Cancun and the Maldives Islands, among other beautiful places.

Those who know AIRSCREEN –the original inflatable screen made in Germany- are already familiarized with these aspects. However, today we want to talk about a branch of cinema, which aims at outpointing the concept of movies as entertainment to become a tool of awareness and self-questioning. Behind this type of cinema, there are some companies, who not only intend to democratize the access to cinema by taking it to remote and least favored places, but also strive to spread the message about renewable energies as a sustainable way of living.

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Today we want to tell the story behind Ecocinema, an Uruguayan audiovisual platform and movie producer, who actively projects its movies through mobile cinema in Latin-America since 2006. Before we continue, for those who are not familiarized with this type of cinema, it basically works through the implementation of solar panels located on the rooftop of a car. These provide sufficient energy for the whole equipment to work. In the case of Ecocinema, they also match their solar-based movie projections with workshops, which are aligned with the movie´s thematic. This means that they make the most of their time, by inviting their spectators to participate in their workshops throughout daytime until it gets dark, when movie time begins.

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View of Ecocinema´s van with the “Hand of the Desert” close to Antofagasta, Chile.

Initially, the main goal of this company was to find a way to distribute their own movies during summer in Uruguay, a country that only had a couple of cinemas during those days. Because of this, Ecocinema´s outdoor projections were highly innovative and very well received by their audience. However, as time went by, they wanted to increment their activities by trespassing the Uruguayan frontiers and also aimed at giving a more meaningful and educative twist to their movies. In addition to this new vision that was developed in 2011, the following year happened to be the United Nation´s year of sustainability. This was the perfect drive for them to decide changing their traditional equipment to 100% solar one. They took advice from Solar Cinema, a Dutch company who also performs in this field, to renovate both their concept and gear.

Moreover, further investigations backed up and motived the continuation of their activities. An example is the study published by the organization “Transparency International”, which condemned corruption as the main root of inequality in Latin America. What is more, some statics indicated that only 3 out of every 10 Latin Americans had access to cinema, which gave Ecocinema a strong sense of purpose to be an agent that attacks these problematics. The movie screenings are completely free what is made possible through the sponsorship of brands, as well as local and international monetary funds. Their movies deal with different topics, such as climate change, sport, aborigines, corruption, among others.

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The first movie projections outside of Uruguay took place in Mexico, where Ecocinema found partners who were also strongly identified with the importance of culture, and were passionate about mobile cinema. Since then, their eco-vans have expanded their activities in Chile, Argentina, Brasil, Ecuador, Panama and very soon in Colombia as well. Another objective to highlight of this Uruguayan firm is that not only they want to create new audiences, but also want to restore the use of public spaces to foster a peaceful coexistence among the people. This is especially important for some communities that Ecocinema reaches, which have had a criminal background and other related issues to violence. In these cases, the movies that are shown are not produced by Ecocinema and their main purpose is to create an enjoyable atmosphere so that families and friends gather up to have fun.

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We want to stress the importance of these activities, which pass on to people both the message of the movie as well as the possibility of implementing renewable energies as a sustainable way of living. So we hope that the story of Ecocinema and their work inspire more entrepreneurs in the world to take action in this field, which is increasingly gaining more relevance in our lives. Your AIRSCREEN team will always be happy to support projects that aim at improving our lives in several aspects. Do you need an inflatable screen for your next project? Click here to contact us here!

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Thank you Ecocinema for the interview! We feel very proud to work with you!

For more information on Ecocinema, click this link https://www.ecocinema.net

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