the media and entertainment union
a sector of Prospect

24 May 2009

Cinema representatives have formed a working group to examine the future for cinema projection.

A senior projectionist in safety clothing What impact will digital projection have on established skills? Pic:Stefano Cagnoni

The steady introduction of digital projection by the leading circuits, including some independents, signals a major change for cinema technicians which BECTU is keen to address.

The new committee is inviting both members and non-members to join in an open debate about the future.

“We are at the most important time in the history of cinema projection and we have to act accordingly,” explained, national official, Mick Corfield.  “We cannot stand by when there is a clear risk to jobs in projection.”

To take part in the discussion contact Mick Corfield.

Future challenges

  • How will an increase in digital projection affect projectionist roles?
  • What new skills challenges do staff face?
  • Is there room for new skills to be developed alongside the current skillset?
  • Are significant job losses a necessary consequence of digital projection?
  • How will digitisation affect career development?

These are just some of the possible questions which the committee will be seeking to address.   

BECTU’s general secretary, Gerry Morrissey, is supporting the initiative and has written to the Cinema Exhibitors Association and to the BKSTS  (British Kinematograph Sound & Television Society) inviting them to join the discussion.  

BECTU representatives, Lee Burns (Odeon) and Chris Tweddell (Cineworld) were elected last week to direct the work of the committee alongside Mick Corfield.

“We are also looking for BECTU members from the other circuits including Empire, Vue, Showcase  and the independent cinemas, to join us to help to decide BECTU policy,” confirmed Mick Corfield.

“This issue affects everyone who works in projection, whether BECTU members or not. As we look to the future, now is a good time for non-members to join BECTU to ensure that their voices are heard.”