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Blogging from San Sebastian September 16-24, 2022

Coverage Recap of 61st edition. Photo gallery 2013 Recap of 63rd edition, video I Recap of 64th edition, video I Recap of 65th edition, video / Recap of 66th edition /Recap of 68th edition, video



The San Sebastian Festival, Tecnalia and Petronor address the influence of new technologies on the audiovisual sector



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  • The three entities join forces to make the San Sebastian Film Festival a space for reflection on the influence of new technologies on the audiovisual sector
  • "Zinemaldia & Technology", a meeting place offering technologists, filmmakers and film industry professionals the chance to obtain first-hand knowledge of the technological advances and opportunities generated in the scope of both creation and business, will take place on Sunday, September 23
  • Tools such as Blockchain, Virtual and Mixed Reality, Neurotechnology or Language Technologies are penetrating the film world
  • This morning, the Festival director, José Luis Rebordinos, Tecnalia’s ICT Director, Joseba Laka, and the President of Petronor, Emiliano López Atxurra, signed the collaboration agreement under which they join hands to foster this pioneer event

The audiovisual sector is continually changing, among other factors due to the emergence of new technologies, tools which have been tested in other areas such as the video game industry or medicine, and which are now finding their field of application in film. Thus, initiatives such as Blockchain, Virtual and Mixed Reality, Neurotechnology and Language Technologies are finding their way into film, creating a different narrative and new business opportunities in the audiovisual industry.

To learn first-hand about the new technological advances, their potential applications and the opportunities generated both in the scope of both creation and business, the San Sebastian Festival, Tecnalia and Petronor have joined hands to launch a new event seeking to promote a coming together between the world of film and ICT innovation.

The event, called Zinemaldia & Technology, will take place on September 23 on the patio of Tabakalera (Paseo Duque de Mandas, 52, Donostia-San Sebastian) and will constitute a meeting place for technologists, filmmakers and film industry professionals. It will also unite the public and private agents who are enabling the integration of technology to the sector.

This morning, the Festival Director, José Luis Rebordinos, Tecnalia’s ICT Director, Joseba Laka, and the President of Petronor, Emiliano López Atxurra, presented the event and signed the collaboration agreement under which they join hands to foster this pioneer event.  

Rebordinos explained that “new technologies are changing cinema, and these changes also affect film festivals, particularly in view of the new electronic mechanisms, distribution platforms and the role of television.”

For his part, Laka considered that “technology will be, more and more, the differential element, both when creating new productions and when commercially exploiting them.”

Similarly, López Atxurra assured that "the Festival is an excellent platform for giving a turn of the screw to cinema as an industry and for making the most of the capacities of the Basque science and technology system in order that the film world too will one day become a client of the technology on offer in the Basque Country." 

Opening talk by J. A. Bayona

The event, to run from 10:00 until 14:00, will open with a talk by film director Juan Antonio Bayona, and will come with presentations, demonstrations and a networking area on state-of-the-art technologies including: Blockchain, a decentralised database which cannot be altered and which will revolutionise the distribution and management of rights and permits; Virtual and Mixed Reality, which will transform the traditional passive spectator into an active spectator immersed in a new experience; Neuromarketing, which studies the way the brain responds to different exterior stimuli; and cutting-edge Language Technologies, which develop advanced techniques in the fields of subtitling and multi-lingual translation.

Completing the event will be two panels with guests from public institutions and private companies, who will discuss public-private collaboration and the new opportunities afforded by the incorporation of technology to the world of film.

Admission will be free of charge. However, to attend, guests must either be accredited at the Festiva or register on the Tecnalia website (, on which more information about the event and its agenda can be found.  

Furthermore, on Tuesday 25, the Europe-Latin America Co-Production Forum will host the round table, backed by SPRI, Film Industry and Blockchain, where Iván Gutierrez from Tecnalia and Covadonga Fernández from Blockchain Media will analyse the opportunities of Blockchain technology applied to the audiovisual sector.

About the San Sebastian Festival

Founded in 1953, the San Sebastian Festival is one of the world’s most important film gatherings. The Zinemaldia is a non-specialised competitive festival with an international official competition and the New Directors, Horizontes Latinos, Zabaltegi-Tabakalera, Perlak, Culinary Zinema, Nest Film Students, Zinemira and Made in Spain sections. It also programmes either a classic and/or a contemporary retrospective. And, with the objective of proposing a reference platform for European and Latin American film industries, the Fetsival develops different activities including the Europe-Latin America Co-Production Forum, Films in Progress and Glocal in Progress.


TECNALIA is a reference Centre for Technology Research and Development in Europe, with 1,400 experts of 30 nationalities, focussed on transforming technology into GDP in order to improve the quality of life of People, creating business opportunities for Companies.


Petronor was born in 1968 in Bizkaia thanks to the initiative of a group of Basque industrialists and will this year celebrate its 50th anniversary. It is currently the biggest refinery in Spain, with an average yearly tax contribution of 700 million euros. Located in Muskiz, Bizkaia, Petronor has 940 workers on its payroll and provides induced employment for 6,200 people, as well as concentrating more than 40% of the movement in the Port of Bilbao. As part of its philosophy, Petronor promotes local cultural development by means of sponsoring a variety of activities in collaboration with different entities and organisations. 





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About SanSebastian

Barreda de Biurrun Inés

Blogging from the 70th San Sebastian Film Festival
Reporting by Inés Barreda de Biurrun and Bruno Chatelin.

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