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The Berlinale A Grand Production
Showcasing The Art Of Filmmaking
Dieter Kosslick
 
The Berlinale is akin to a Grand Film production set illuminating and exhibiting the many facets of the art of filmmaking, from a Worldwide community of diverse filmmakers.

Each year Dieter Kosslick and his team at the Berlinale orchestrate the event with the primary goal of bringing to Festival attendees – the stars, directors, producers, sales agents, distributors, the Press and the enthusiastic Berlin public – an array of films from around the globe that touch on every topic imaginable, and year on year delights.

Reflecting a fundamental drive to innovate and adapt, the 64th Berlinale unveils the 2003 Berlinale Talent initiative with a new name and logo. The Berlinale Talent Campus, which began in 2003, was a unique initiative, a meeting point for up-and-coming filmmakers, and 'Campus' reflected that initial process. The Studios and Project Labs developed and grew from the primarily lecture-like structure as they responded to the changing needs of the filmmakers. The new name Berlinale Talents reflects the growth that mirrors the now practical needs of ambitious professionals.

This year, over 120 experts will join the 300 film professionals selected for the Berlinale Talents, which runs February 8 to 13 at the HAU Hebbel am Ufer Theater. The 2014 focus is how to successfully push storytelling and create compelling films. Berlinale Talents is headed by Programme manager Matthijs Wouter Knol and Project Manager Christine Tröstrum.

Another innovation way ahead of its time is the Panorama which Wieland Speck has headed since 1992. This year's programme of 52 films focuses on What Cinema Can Do.

Always showcasing provocative films and themes, Speck commented in an interview on the Political undertones of the films for 2014, "Changing the world is a matter near and dear to the Panorama's heart. The political focus is certainly due to the filter that we curators function as – but we didn't make the films ourselves. The subjects are there and we gather them. Our selection trips and delegates in different countries do give us a good idea of what's going on politically – in the sense of social participation, even if it's through opposition. The fear that the raid-like financial enrichment of a few at the expense of the general populace will end too soon is especially present. In our opening film Nước (2030), for instance, the young Vietnamese director shows us a world in which global warming has raised the sea level to the point that it covers half of all the arable land – and spotlights the greed of the multinational corporations that stand to profit from the situation. The films in the programme outline a brilliant spectrum of alternatives, and finding alternatives is a creative power." On returning to the refurbished Zoo Palast, he added, "The Zoo Palast is a highly emotional building for me – my first film screened there in 1981 at the Berlinale! Tearing it down or repurposing it would have been a cultural crime against Berlin. The outside is protected as a historic building, but anything could have happened with the inside. Yves Saint Laurent, the film that will open the Zoo Palast programme, is a wonderful film for the occasion, a great European film with a gay success story. It's truly grand cinema, great actors, and French cinema already sits on a pedestal for us. So I'm really happy about it."

Other sections of the Berlinale: Perspektive Deutsches Kino, Forum, Retrospective, Homage, Culinary, NATIVe, Generation and Shorts, all reflect from the curators trusted with the task, a singular passion for the filmmakers and films which they exercise with 'individuality within the spirit of the team' that constitutes the Berlinale Grand Production.

Festival Director Dieter Kosslick orchestrates the Berlinale with the fine hand of a Maestro, placing the instruments and allowing them to choose the melody that makes the distinct tune of the Berlinale.

As the Maestro, Dieter Kosslick also gets to choose, and selects films for the Berlinale Special and Berlinale Special Gala, which are new and extraordinary productions that honor great cinema personalities, and moreover, films by or about outstanding persons of film to whom the festival feels especially attached.

Like all such Festivals, the event is a huge undertaking, and for the first time since 2007, the Berlinale is again sponsored by four principal partners. Audi comes on board as the new automobile partner, as well as long-standing partners L'ORÉAL PARiS, TESIRO and ZDF, with signed agreements until 2016. The Berlinale also welcomes a number of other new partners this year: Canada Goose, experts for extreme weather outerwear; EMC², a US-American hard- and software manufacturer, as well as König Pilsener, the Festival's new beer partner.

Festival Director Dieter Kosslick commented, "We would like to thank Germany's Minister of Cultural Affairs (BKM) for the unfailing support. The Berlinale is also supported by some 40 enterprises and they have long become an integral component of the Festival. They host the press, accredited guests and visitors, and enrich the Berlinale with initiatives for new young talents and other events. Last but not least, they are indispensable in providing the Festival with the modern technical infrastructure it requires for its realization."

 
 


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