Following its first session, the jury for World Cinema Fund, established by the German Federal Cultural Foundation (Kulturstiftung des Bundes) and the Berlinale in autumn 2004, has selected nine projects for financing. More than 150 applications were received within the three weeks before the October 27, 2004 deadline.
The following projects have been recommended for financing by the jury:
Naousse, directed by: Khalil Joreige, J. Hadjithomas (Lebanon), Abbout Productions, 35,000 EUR
Feature Film/ Beirut: Malek’s father disappeared during the civil war and now, 15 years later, has been declared dead. Dealing with his father’s disappearance and his battle with a strange disease are the realms of the now grown-up son’s, Malek, life.
Barca, directed by: Teguia Tariq (Algeria), Neffa Films, 40,000 EUR
Feature Film/ Kamel and Zina live in Algeria under constant fear of Islamic fundamentalists and police brutality. They hope to make their fortune in Europe. This is a small journey in the architectural chaos of the Algerian Banlieu, a journey in search of happiness.
Waiting for an Angel, directed by: Newton I. Aduaka (Nigeria), 60,000 EUR
Feature film/ Living under a military dictatorship, an incarcerated student with literary ambitions is denied paper and pencil. But then one day, the prison director is in need of the student’s help: He is in love and needs a ghost-writer for poetic love stories.
El Otro, directed by: Ariel Rotter (Argentina), Selavy Productions, 60,000 EUR
Feature Film/ While holidaying in the provinces, protagonist Juan takes on different identities. Their feelings, thoughts, erotic imaginings and their feeling in regards to “being alive” are reflected.
Raffle Me, directed by: Karim Ainouz (Brazil), Videofilmes, 25,000 EUR
Feature Film/ In order to escape life in a small town and move to San Paolo, 18-year old Suely organizes a lottery. The prize - herself!
Saratan, directed by: Ernest Abdyshaparov (Kyrgyzstan), Icon Film, 15,000 EUR
Documentary/ In this film the director deals with the economic and social changes as well as the changes in private life following Kyrgyzstan becoming an independent state.
Paradise Now, directed by: Hany Abu-Assad (Palestine), Razor Film, 30,000 EUR
Feature Film/ The night before they before they act, two Palestinian suicide bombers discuss their doubts, longings and fears.
Funding for distribution in Germany:
El Abrazo Partido, directed by: Daniel Burman (Argentina), Pegasos Film, 15,000 EUR
Featrue film/ Ariel wants to understand why his father left his family shortly after he was born to fight for Israel and never came back. Then one day, out of the blue, his father stands right there in front of him.
Días de Santiago, directed by: Josué Méndez (Peru), Mil Colores Media, 15,000 EUR
Feature film/ The story of a former Peruvian soldier who is unable to cope with daily life in civilian society.
The World Cinema Fund aims to support film projects from countries whose film industry is less developed or whose existence is endangered by political or economic crises. The projects chosen for funding should deal with their region’s cultural identity and contribute to the development of the local film industry. The World Cinema Fund is a German Federal Cultural Foundation initiative and has made an initial 1.5 million Euros available for financing over the first three years. The fund will focus on promoting the production and distribution of films from countries in Latin America, the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa until 2007. The World Cinema Fund has developed a model for cooperation which aims to bring filmmakers from these regions together with German film producers so as to raise awareness of their projects in Germany as well promote them in the global market.
The next deadline for submissions is March 23, 2005. Another round of submissions is planned for late summer. For more information, go to www.berlinale.de
February 11, 2005