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Berlinale Talents: Seven Indians Make It to the List

admin   January 28, 2020

Seven Indian filmmakers have been chosen to showcase their work at the ‘Berlinale Talent’s section of the upcoming Berlin International Film Festival 2020.

India is set to make its presence felt big time, at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival 2020, to be held from February 20th to March 1.
Besides Indian filmmakers showcasing their films at various other sections and categories of the event, the film festival’s section named ‘Berlinale Talents’ feature seven Indian filmmakers that are set to impress the audience with their talent.

The section will feature works by 255 film professionals from 86 countries from all across the globe. Among the chosen set of talent, seven filmmakers from India have made it to the list and will be showcasing their work at the prestigious film festival.

As part of the section, the filmmakers will be a part of an intense six-day programme featuring around 100 events with internationally renowned experts and acclaimed Berlinale guests holding workshops and discussions. Berlinale Talents will take place from February 22-27, 2020.

Let’s take a look at who all from India have made it to this part of the festival:

Prantik Basu: the Kolkata-based filmmaker, who studied direction and screenplay writing at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune, is not new to the festival. His 2016 short film Sakhisona won the Tiger Award for short films in the 46th International Film Festival of Rotterdam, in 2017. His film Rang Mahal, was among 24 titles that competed for the Golden and Silver Bear at 2019’s Berlinale Shorts.

Geetika Vidya: An Indian theatre practitioner and actress, Geetika’s theatrical journey began from her college days at University of Delhi’s KM College. She was part of the college theatre society and acted, directed and wrote scripts for the street and the stage, when she was still a student. She played ‘Soni’ in Ivan Ayr’s film of the same name, which had its world premiere at 75th Venice Film Festival (Orizzonti), and won international accolades. She has also performed for over 300 shows as an actor for Zangoora-India’s First Bollywood Musical. Geetika has also lent her voice for commercial promotion of brands like Google and Spicejet.

Ivan Ayr: The Chandigarh-born filmmaker channelled his concerns over women safety in Delhi in his film ‘Soni’ which premiered this year in Venice after snagging the best work-in-progress award at the NFDC Film Bazaar in 2017. Soni won the best film award at the recent Pingyao International Film Festival – part of the prize money will go into funding the director’s next project. ‘Soni’ also bagged the Best Film on Gender Equality award at the 20th MAMI Mumbai Film Festival 2018.

Varun Sasindran: Born in Kerala, India in 1987, he studied electronics and communication engineering and worked as a software engineer for four years. In 2012, inspired by his visits to international film festivals, he quit his job and turned his attentions to film. He then studied visual media at the University of Calicut in Kerala and took a master’s degree at the Sarajevo Film Academy. His short film include “Omarska”, an attempt to erect a virtual memorial for the victims of the Bosnian war, was screened at Berlinale 2019 and earned a special mention at the festival.

Mukul Haloi: Hailing from Assam, Mukul was born in January 1991. He studied Film Direction at the Film and Television Institute of India, Pune. His short film “Days of Autumn” was appreciated at many festivals, including top prize at International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala, 2017. His feature-length documentary “Tales From Our Childhood” had its International Premiere at ARKIPEL-Jakarta, 2018 and Indian premiere at MIFF. He also has to his credit a feature film “Loralir Sadhukath”, for which he was given the Bala Kailasam Memorial Award. Mukul is now embarking on his first feature-length fictional debut.

Acharya Venu: Venu is known for his film titled MA’AMA (Moan) which is the first-ever film made in Garo language, the mother tongue of an indigenous tribe in North-East India, as its Cinematographer. MA’AMA was selected in numerous film festivals and was awarded the National Award for best Garo film by the Government of India.

Dominic Sangma: MA’AMA’s director is yet another Indian talent chosen to be part of Berlinale Talents. His first feature film, Ma’Ama is an intense probe into mourning and the process of coming to terms with bereavement. He’s currently working on his second feature for which he received the Hubert Bals Fund for Development. Born and raised in a remote village in Ri Bhoi district of Meghalaya, Dominic Sangma learnt the nuances of filmmaking at the Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute in Kolkata. Ma’ama was the only Indian film to earn a slot in the International Competition of the 2018 Jio MAMI Film Festival. Sangma’s second film, Rapture, was one of ten projects from across the world selected for mentoring by filmmaker Mira Nair in the La Fabrique Cinemaprogramme hosted by InstitutFrancais as a part of the 2019 Cannes Film Festival.


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GET READY for EUROPEAN FILM MARKET 2020

admin   January 12, 2020

Berlinale beckons you. The European Film Market (Fe 20-27, 2020) has lot of things in store. Prepare now for the grand event where you can explore, connect and do business. Over a period of eight days, around 10,000 representatives — primarily producers, buyers and sales agents, distributors and financiers – come together to network and do business deals.

Over a period of eight days at EFM, around 10,000 representatives of the international film and media industries – primarily producers, buyers and sales agents, distributors and financiers – come together to network, exchange, inform themselves and do business.

As the first major film market of the year, the EFM is in a strong position and serves as a barometer and pacesetter for the new film year: new productions and developments, future-proof business models, contacts and contracts – it all starts here.

The EFM’s varied locations range from the beautiful Gropius Bau to elegant Marriott Hotel, modern Berliner Freiheit or the historic Zoo Palast. A professional infrastructure for exhibitors, state-of-the-art cinemas, numerous market premieres and outstanding service via close customer and partner relationships distinguish the film market as a first class trading platform.

Here’s all to know about European Film Market

SCREENING FACILITIES

EFM offers top quality screening facilities for several high-end formats in comfortable state-of-the-art cinemas. Most EFM venues are conveniently located within walking distance in and around Potsdamer Platz. The EFM’s free shuttle service ensures quick connections between EFM venues and the cinemas.

3 LOCATIONS

To accommodate the traffi c of up to 110,000 visits during the 8 days of the Market, the EFM offers three exceptional locations, the prestigious Gropius Bau neighboring Gropius Park and the modern Marriott Hotel at Potsdamer Platz.

EFM LANDMARK

EFM Landmark will offer plenty of options to present new trends, the tax rebates and incentives du jour, as well as changes in co-production funding opportunities and showcases of the best locations for film and drama series to producers looking for the right fit. Additionally, an important aspect of EFM Landmark will be a matchmaking service on its two consecutive days.

ALL UNDER…

Events will take place both in and around Gropius Bau, as well as in the Berlin House of Representatives, where the Berlinale Co-Production Market takes place. Like with all other business platforms at EFM, access to ‘EFM Landmark’ is with a Market Badge only.

CONNECTING PEOPLE

At the centre of one of Europe’s most exciting startup hubs – Berlin – the European Film Market selects 10 leading tech entrepreneurs and connects them with the film and media industries under the banner of EFM Horizon. Once more in 2020, companies from around the globe will be represented.

INTERNATIONAL START-UPS

As part of this innovative platform, 10 selected international Startups will participate in 3 days of meetings, networking and presentations to the international industry. The companies selected to participate in EFM Startups will be carefully curated to showcase new ideas in the intersection between media and technology be it in development, production, distribution or marketing – which are essential to the industry’s survival and future growth in a rapidly changing landscape.

PITCH PRESENTATIONS

The selected companies will be introduced to the industry in a formal group pitch and presentation at EFM Horizon headquarters – Berliner Freiheit on Potsdamer Platz. Pre-arranged one-on-one meetings with hand-picked top-level industry professionals, as well as in group meetings with various catalyst organisations will round out the program. On 24 and 25 February, the EFM Startup companies will be present at their stands in the prestigious Gropius Bau, headquarters of the European Film Market, for ongoing networking and individual meetings.

CHILE, THE COUNTRY IN FOCUS

During the 70th Berlin International Film Festival in 2020, Chile will be “Country in Focus” at the European Film Market (EFM). EFM’s “Country in Focus” programme was launched in 2017 and aims to present in depth the film industry and filmmakers of a country and offer them a special platform.

DIFFERENT ASPECTS

The EFM will present Chilean filmmakers and filmmaking under different aspects. The main programme will provide many opportunities to network with Chilean producers, distributors, investors and creators, and to get to know Chilean productions. Supported by ProChile – Chile’s Exports Promotion Bureau – “Chile in Focus” will also mark the tenth anniversary of Cinema Chile, the organisation that has successfully promoted Chilean cinema worldwide.

BERLINALE SERIES

The Berlin International Film Festival has been emphasising series in the official programme since 2015 with Berlinale Series. The programme is curated by Carlo Chatrian, Artistic Director of the Berlinale. He has appointed Julia Fidel as the new head of Berlinale Series. Julia Fidel has previously worked for the sections Panorama and Generation – including as a member of the selection committee in the latter. In addition to her festival work, she has contributed to numerous film productions, and works as a film choreographer and press agent.


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Berlinale Forum Celebrates Golden Jubilee in 2020

admin   January 10, 2020

The Berlinale Forum takes place for the 50th time in 2020. In collaboration with Forum Expanded, the section will be presenting the films shown in the year it was founded to celebrate this anniversary. Bringing the 1971 programme back to the big screen offers a way of examining an era as eventful in society as it was in culture. The relationship between the films, their historical context, and our own present day will form the subject of a day of panel discussions on February 27, 2020.

When Ulrich and Erika Gregor and their colleagues founded the International Forum of New Cinema, they had a clear eye for the many radical innovations in cinema, the turbulent socio-political situation and the need to keep film history alive. Films made in countries yet to appear on the world map of cinema celebrated their premieres here, as did formalist adventures and non-narrative experiments. Film classics known the world over already formed part of the festival together with works that would later attain the same status. They also showed numerous films of an overtly political nature that were suffused with the countercultural zeitgeist. Today, numerous films originally shown at the Forum form the centerpiece of Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art’s archive of independent and radical films, which is the only collection of its kind in the world.

In 2020, Berlinale Forum and Forum Expanded will replay the section’s entire 1971 edition. 21 programmes will be shown during the festival, with the remaining 22 to be presented at Arsenal once the festival is over. The central questions here are: What is the legacy of the Forum’s first year and what significance does this legacy have today? How has the Forum developed over time and what has become of the concept of counter-culture that was of such decisive importance in 1971? At the screenings and a day of panel discussions on February 27, 2020, audiences will have the opportunity to discuss these questions in depth with filmmakers, scholars and artists.

Soviet cinema classics such as Alexandr Medvedkin’s Schastye (Happiness) form part of the anniversary programme, as do key feminist works (The Woman’s Film by the Newsreel Group). Documentaries about the American civil rights movement (The Murder of Fred Hampton by Howard Alk) equally screen alongside unsettlingly radical features, such as Ostia by Sergio Citti or Gishiki (The Ceremony) by Nagisa Oshima.


Dieter Kosslick Last Hurrah

admin   February 1, 2019

Mr Berlinale

Dieter Kosslick was in his early 50s when he took over the reins of the Berlin International Festival in 2001. Eighteen years on, the septuagenarian who has rightfully earned the sobriquet “Mr. Berlinale”, is set to step down, leaving behind a dynamic legacy. Under his leadership, the film festival grew exponentially, with the audience trebling since he became the fourth Berlinale director.

Kosslick added several sections to the festival, including Perspektive Deutsches Kino, devoted to discovering new German filmmaking talent. He also introduced the Berlinale Co-Production Market, which has thrived in recent years, as well the Culinary Cinema section. Also significant has been Berlinale’s association with World Cinema Fund, which has served to salvage many classics from the ravages of time.

While striking a fine balance between arthouse cinema and films that the general audience can relate to – the tightrope walk is necessitated by Berlinale being a public festival – Kosslick has been mindful about engaging with the political changes that have swept the world since the turn of the millennium.

The Berlinale programming in the last 18 years has reflected concerns about war and occupation, displacement of people and the migrant crisis, and the alarming growth of rightwing radicalism across the world. Therefore, even as the festival tended to lag behind Cannes and Venice on key parameters, it never lost its relevance – and lustre.