Swiss born Burkina Faso based director Berni Goldblat has made a strong case for the Ciné Guimbi project. The cinema which was formerly called Ciné Rio was built in the late 1950s under the French colonial government. The open air theatre was first managed by a French company, then by the Burkinabe National Cinema Company (SONACIB). Ciné Guimbi was taken over by a filmmaker association, AARPA, which went bankrupt in 2003.
Golbalt decided to set up Association de soutien du cinéma au Burkina Faso to take over the rehabilitation, restoration and management of Ciné Guimbi. In 2012, he began a major fundraising campaign and was able to secure funding at several international film festivals and 140 seats and 44% of the budget was secured.
Ciné Guimbi which has a 2015 completion date will be a covered cinema with 154 and 323 seats for each screen. “The aim is to equip it with DLP (digital light processing) projectors and a high quality sound system,” says Goldblat.
On 31 December 2013, industry professionals were able to buy the site as a result of a grant from Michèle Berset Swiss Foundation.
Nolly Silver Screen is an official media partner with Ciné Guimbi.
This article first appeared in Issue 5 of Nolly Silver Screen magazine.