Gender Equality-Berlinale Eliminates Silver Bear for Best Actor and Best Actress

By Pickle  August 25, 2020
Gender Equality-Berlinale Eliminates Silver Bear for Best Actor and Best Actress, Pickle Media

Beginning 2021, Berlinale International Film Festival have eliminated Silver Bear for Best Actor and Best Actress at the annual Berlinale awards in the closing ceremony, but instituted a gender-neutral Silver Bear for Best Leading Role and Best Supporting Role.

In simple words, the best performances will be defined in a non-gendered manner. Usually, Berinale give away four awards and the ceremony ends with the announcement of the Best Actor. Now, there will be only two awards and they can recognize both a man and a woman.

Berlinale festival directors Mariette Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian stated they want to create more awareness about gender equality in the film sector. “We believe that not separating the awards in the acting field according to gender comprises a signal for a more gender-sensitive awareness in the film industry,” says the Berlinale director duo Mariette Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian.

It may be recalled that the first gender-neutral award in history was awarded to Emma Watson in 2017 at the MTV Awards for her role in Disney’s live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast. Emma Watson competed with Hugh Jackman and James McAvoy for the award.

Gender Equality-Berlinale Eliminates Silver Bear for Best Actor and Best Actress, Pickle Media

“The first acting award in history that doesn’t separate nominees based on their sex says something about how we perceive the human experience,” Emma Watson said in her acceptance speech. “MTV’s move to create a genderless award for acting will mean something different to everyone. But to me, it indicates that acting is about the ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. And that doesn’t need to be separated into two different categories. This is very meaningful to me.”

Berlinale also made another important decision instituting a Special Silver Bear Jury Prize. In January 2020, the Silver Bear Alfred Bauer was suspended due to revelations under National Socialism of the festival’s first director. It will no longer be awarded. A new prize has been created, that of the special jury prize.

The Berlinale International Jury of the Competition will award the following eight prizes:

  • Golden Bear for Best Film (awarded to the film’s producers)
  • Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize
  • Silver Bear for Best Director
  • Silver Bear Jury Prize
  • Silver Bear for Best Leading Performance
  • Silver Bear for Best Supporting Performance
  • Silver Bear for Best Screenplay
  • Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Contribution

Also, in 2021, the section Generation will only show feature-length films with a running time of at least 60 minutes – and no short films – in its two competition programmes Generation Kplus and Generation 14plus.

The official film registration starts on September 1st, 2020. You will then find the regulations on http://www.berlinale.de.

Berlinale which is scheduled for February 11-21, 2021 will be physical event. European Film Market 2021 will be both physical and online event as of today.

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