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European Film Communities Support Refugees With ‘For A Thousand Lives’ Appeal

A powerhouse of film industry players including Michel Hazanavicius (“The Artist”), Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Laurent Cantet, Béla Tarr will be speaking out for refugees at the European Parliament today.

Their appeal, named “For a Thousand Lives: Be Human,” aims at bringing European governments to “respond to refugee matters by acting jointly, in solidarity, and with humanity, in accordance with the EU’s founding values,” stated the delegation.

“The European Union must offer legal ways for people fleeing war and terror to seek protection in the EU.
European nations must act in solidarity. The Dublin Convention has led to precarious situations for refugees and unjust burdens on the EU’s border countries,” read the appeal.

The petition also says equitable relocation of refugees among the E.U. states is not enough — “European countries must create living conditions for refugees that embrace personal freedom, physical safety without restriction, and offer access to work and education.”

Signed by 5,500 industry figures, the appeal will be handed out to Martin Schulz, the president of the European Parliament, Claude Moraes, chair of the Committee on civil liberties, justice, and home affairs and Silvia Costa, chairwoman of the committee on culture and education. The filmmakers are also set to go to the European Commission and meet with vice-president Frans Timmermans.

Filmmakers and actors who have signed the petition include Emmanuelle Béart, Susanne Bier, Juliette Binoche, Dany Boon, Constantin Costa-Gavras, Daniel Craig, Alfonso Cuarón, Jean Pierre & Luc Dardenne, Julie Gayet, Michael Haneke, Agnieszka Holland, Isabelle Huppert, Aki Kaurismäki, Claude Lanzmann, Mike Leigh, Ken Loach, Sophie Marceau, JiříMenzel, Cristian Mungiu, Joshua Oppenheimer, Pawel Pawlikowski, Corneliu Porumboiu, Jonathan Pryce, Isabella Rossellini, Volker Schlöndorff, Til Schweiger, Ulrich Seidl, Léa Seydoux, Bertrand Tavernier, and Thomas Vinterberg.

The initiative is being supported by film festivals around the world.

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