Berlinale: Press Releases

Press Releases 2007


Jan 23, 2007:
Panorama announces opening films and Panorama Dokumente

The Panorama main programme will open with The Tracey Fragments by Bruce McDonald. The Canadian director presented his film The Love Crimes Of Gillian Guess in the Panorama of 2005. Using innovative visuals, McDonald explores a fifteen-year-old girl’s fragmented emotional world in his new film.

The Panorama Special will open with Bushi No Ichibun (Love And Honor) by Japanese master director Yoji Yamada. It is the third and final instalment in his samurai trilogy – the first two parts were screened in the Berlinale Competitions of 2003 and 2005 – and focuses on a young samurai (Takyya Kimura) who serves as food taster for a lord.

Panorama Dokumente

17 films, including 12 world premieres, will screen in the Panorama Dokumente. “Big names and themes relating to politics, music, art and fashion will characterize this year’s Panorama Dokumente”, says section head Wieland Speck.

The opening film will set the tone: Strange Culture by celebrated American film essayist Lynn Hershman Leeson documents the extremely paranoid reaction of US security authorities in the case of Steve Kurtz, a biogenetics professor, who is suspected of terrorism. Tilda Swinton and Thomas Jay Ryan play Kurtz and his wife, while Kurtz himself recounts his harrowing experiences with the FBI.

American documentary filmmaker Ric Burns will present his four-hour-long work Andy Warhol: A Documentary Film. Dennis Hopper, Bob Dylan, Salvador Dalí, Edie Sedgwick, Candy Darling and Holly Woodlawn, among others, speak about the artist. The film is narrated by Laurie Anderson and features Jeff Koons as the voice of Warhol.

In Jeff Garlin’s This Filthy World, John Waters revives “guerrilla filmmaking“ of the 1970s. Anarchistic and amusing, Waters stands centre stage and annotates his oeuvre within the context of American film history.

Célébration by Olivier Meyrou, who won the Teddy Award in 2006 with Au-delà de la haine, gives viewers a glimpse of the creative world of fashion mogul Yves Saint Laurent, while Rodolphe Marconi takes an intimate look at the legendary force behind Chanel as landmark fashion house in Lagerfeld Confidentiel.

The documentary Scott Walker – 30 Century Man, by Stephen Kijak, director of Cinemania, succeeds in making the solo career of the singer Scott Walker tangible. David Bowie, who produced the film, talks of “his mentor”, and Brian Eno and Marc Almond express their esteem of the artist.

In Uli M. Schueppel’s BerlinSong, young musicians from all over the world come together in Berlin, drawn by the city’s creative atmosphere and an alternative lifestyle without consumerism and status symbols.

With Tamara, Peter Kahane not only presents a remarkable period in the history of East German rock, but also tells how Tamara Danz’s companions deal with her fatal illness.

Der Rote Elvis by Leopold Grün is the extraordinary story of American singer and entertainer Dean Reed, who after success in socialistically-minded Latin America, moved to East Germany in 1973 and achieved stardom there.

Daniel Gordon’s Crossing the Line recounts what happened to four American soldiers who were stationed as peacekeepers at the border between North and South Korea in 1962. Independently from one another, they defected to North Korea. What were their motives and how are they doing today?

Set against the Siberian Gulag UF91-9, Maria Yatskova portrays three women in Miss Gulag. Despite drastic punishments, their will to survive remains unbroken.

In 2006, the brutal attack of a large number of counter-demonstrators on a handful of valiant activists at the first demonstration for the emancipation of homosexuals in Moscow made the headlines. The backdrop to these events is described in Moskva. Pride '06 by Vladimir Ivanov.

At the Panorama of 2006, Fucking Different revealed the prejudices and differences between Berlin’s lesbian, gay and transgender communities. In Fucking Different New York, filmmakers, such as Steve Gallagher, Todd Verow, Barbara Hammer and Abigail Child, voice their views.

The history of queer film is the central theme of André Schäfer’s Schau mir in die Augen Kleiner with Stephen Frears, Gus Van Sant, Tilda Swinton and François Ozon. Arte television channel, which will devote an entire evening to the Teddy Award, the queer film prize at the Berlinale, commissioned this documentary.

In 2006, the Panorama panel “Black Actors in Europe” led to the establishment of SFD - Schwarze Filmschaffende Deutschland (Blacks in Film/Germany): this year, the association will present a block of six short films entitled Neue Bilder in the Panorama as well as a photo exhibition at the Independent Lounge K44.

Blindsight documents the adventure of a group who set out to climb Mount Everest. Its members are pupils from Tibet’s only school for the blind, their German blind teacher Sabriye Tenberken, who also founded the school, and American blind climber Erik Weihenmayer. “Dolby Screen Talk” will make it possible for the blind and visually impaired to enjoy the screening.

Last but not least, Invisibles, directed by Isabel Coixet, Fernando León de Aranoa, Mariano Barroso, Javier Corcuera and Wim Wenders, focuses on the “silent sufferings” of the Third World: on, for instance, displacement in areas of conflict in South America, recruitment of children soldiers in Africa and unprofitable diseases for the pharmaceutical industry. As its producer, Spanish film star Javier Bardem bears responsibility for this exceptional work.

Titles to be screened in the Panorama Dokumente:

From Germany:

BerlinSong by Uli M. Schueppel (WP)

Der Rote Elvis (The Red Elvis) by Leopold Grün (WP)

Fucking Different New York by Steve Gallagher, Lala Endara, Todd Verow, Barbara Hammer, Andre Salas, Abigail Child, Jack Waters, Samara Halperin, Amy von Harrington, Sherry Vine, Hedia Maron, Dan Borden, Charles Lum (WP)

Tamara by Peter Kahane (WP)

From Germany/Great Britain:

NEUE BILDER schwarzer filmschaffender in deutschland (NEW PERSPECTIVES - Black artists in German film) by Todd Ford, Ezra Tsegaye, Sebastian Kühne, Branwen Okpako, John A. Kantara, Winta Yohannes, Otu Tetteh,

with Dennenesch Zoude, Verona Joseph, Nicholas Haley, Rudolph Walker, Todd Ford, Emmanuel Ivan, Nü Noi Kwashi, Veronika Obermeier, Diegonante (WP)

From Germany/France/Netherlands/Sweden/Finland:

Schau mir in die Augen, Kleiner (Here´s Looking At You, Boy) by André Schäfer,

with Stephen Frears, Gus Van Sant, Tilda Swinton, François Ozon (WP)

From France:

Célébration (Celebration) by Olivier Meyrou (WP)

Lagerfeld Confidentiel (Lagerfeld Confidential) by Rodolphe Marconi (WP)

From Great Britain:

Blindsight by Lucy Walker

Crossing The Line by Daniel Gordon

From Great Britain /USA:

Scott Walker - 30 Century Man by Stephen Kijak

From the Russian Federation:

Moskva. Pride '06 (Moscow Gay Pride Festival) by Vladimir Ivanov (WP)

From Spain:

Invisibles (Invisibles) by Isabel Coixet, Fernando León de Aranoa, Mariano Barroso, Javier Corcuera, Wim Wenders (WP)

From the USA:

Andy Warhol: A Documentary Film by Ric Burns

Miss Gulag by Maria Yatskova (WP)

This Filthy World by Jeff Garlin, with John Waters

Strange Culture by Lynn Hershman Leeson, with Tilda Swinton, Thomas Jay Ryan, Peter Coyote, Josh Kornblut (WP)

Press Office

January 23, 2007