'Cinema Belgica' launched as an open access platform

(12-10-2021) The Cinema Belgica team announces the second phase in the platform’s release, now as an open access platform.

In October 2020 Cinema Belgica had its soft launch during the International Film Festival Gent, Belgium. In this first phase Cinema Belgica was released in a closed BETA version (password required). The purpose of this soft launch was to make the data publicly available for researchers and other users, to conduct testing and to obtain feedback. The Cinema Belgica team is happy to announce the second phase in the platform’s release, now as an open access platform. Among the many improvements and enrichments of the massive dataset behind Cinema Belgica, is that five new datasets have been added. For the next few months the Cinema Belgica team invites researchers, cinephiles and other users to give feedback so that they can improve this collaborative platform on Belgium's historical cinema culture.

Cinema Belgica is the online platform which results from the "Cinecos/Cinema EcoSystem"-project, an interuniversity infrastructure project (funded by the FWO-Hercules Fund, 2018-2024). The project is set up between Ghent University, the University of Antwerp, and the University of Amsterdam. Inspired by the Dutch Cinema Context and other platforms on cinema and media history, Cinema Belgica aims at offering an open source data platform covering key aspects of Belgian cinema history.


In the past few months, five major datasets were added to Cinema Belgica, including a major dataset on the decisions and cuttings of the Belgian official film control board (1921-2019); a major dataset on film dossiers of the Belgian Catholic Film League (donated by KADOC-KULeuven); a dataset on Belgian feature fiction film production (2000-2019; donated by Bram Van Beek and Gertjan Willems); a dataset on cinema in Ostbelgien (1919-1940; donated by Vitus Sproten from the Zentrum für Ostbelgische Geschichte and the Centre for Contemporary and Digital History of the University of Luxembourg); and a dataset on cinema programming in Antwerp (1952, 1962, 1972).

Thanks to these newly integrated datasets, Cinema Belgica currently contains 51100 films, 3318 cinemas, 14164 people, 24055 programs, 12479 companies, and 21354 censorship decisions.


The Cinema Belgica platform also launches a new item in its Stories section, one by the British film historian and economist John Sedgwick. Professor Sedgwick uses the cities of Antwerp and Ghent to explore, measure and compare film popularity by using his robust POPSTAT methodology.

CINEMA BELGICA NEWSLETTER. Here you can subscribe to the Cinema Belgica newsletter for updates on the project.
CINEMA BELGICA WEBSITE. Here you can start visiting the Cinema Belgica platform.
INFO AND CONTACT. For more information, please email on info@cinemabelgica.be.

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