Cinekid Festival

Cinekid Festival

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From 15 through 21 October, the Cinekid Film, Television and New Media Festival for children celebrates its 30th anniversary. Taking place in 30 Dutch cities, it covers all aspects of the media industry and offers workshops and masterclasses as well as high-quality media.

Cinekid started 29 years ago as a new initiative of theatre and conference centre De Meervaart in Amsterdam. It was the year in which the Dutch film was put firmly on the map with titles such as The Assault, Abel and Flodder. Dissemination of culture was a broadly shared ideal. Ten years earlier the Berlin film festival started a subdivision for children and the first film festivals for youth appeared.

Cinekid also had its own TV corner in De Meervaart. One screen, a video recorder and some cushions on the ground. No matter how small, the roots of the present Cinekid were here. The foundation is now regarded as a global multimedia player with a maximum coverage of the primary target population.

Size and Reach
Cinekid grew rapidly. The festival on location expanded into a promotion programme for youth film distribution in 30 cities throughout the Netherlands. In these cities, Cinekid started local film festivals for children together with art cinemas. The popular festival now attracts some 60,000 visitors and is one of the most successful cultural festivals in regard to the reach of the primary target population.

CinekidIn Amsterdam, one of every four children gets in touch with Cinekid each year. Nationwide Cinekid communicates with approximately 20% of all primary schools in 2014 and gives workshops on a daily basis across the Netherlands. The foundation is considered a leading institution by peers at international level. Its distinguishing features are the programme of pure youth productions, the supply of multimedia and particular attention for the industry as a whole. Multimediality matters today since media are developed on many interactive types of media for various fast changing platforms (such as TV, consoles, mobile media, cinema, websites). Children are large-scale users of multimedia. Dutch children spend four hours a day on media, which is more than the time they spend at school on a yearly basis. In the US this is already as much as seven hours.

New Media
Halfway into Cinekid’s existence, New Media became an important element. What started as Kids&Bits in cultural, art and debating centre De Balie, grew rapidly into the present 1,200 m2 MediaLab, full of interactive installations and workshops. Although film still figures largely for young audiences, the multimedia part in particular appeals to children and the MediaLab became an instant success.

An important part of the MediaLab is the Cinekid Lion for Best New Media Production, an annual competition for apps, cross-media productions, installations, and (online) video games presented in the Netherlands and Flanders between June1st 2015 and June 1st 2016. Every year the jury chooses the 12 best entries, which will become part of the program of the MediaLab. During the festival the Professionals jury will choose the main winner, who will receive a prize of €7.500,-. The audience of kids will select their own MediaLab favorite, who will be rewarded with the Audience Award. Both prizes will be awarded during the award ceremony at the end of the festival.

Date, Time & Location:
The festival runs from Saturday, 15 October through Friday, 21 October 2016. For a full overview of the programme, please click here.

For more information, please go to

Image and text credit: Cinekid Festival.
Photo credit: Arthur de Smidt

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