On Thursday evening, February 18, the 14th edition of Berlinale Talents came to a successful close with the master class of Oscar-winning director Alex Gibney. During the six-day event, 300 film creatives and over 150 internationally renowned experts turned the HAU Hebbel am Ufer into a hub for networking, intercultural exchange and discussing the latest trends in film.
Under its theme “The Nature of Relations”, Berlinale Talents explored the inner connections of cinematic storytelling and new ways of collaborative working in production and distribution. In over 100 events the Talents met internationally noted authorities from the world of film, among them Meryl Streep, Brigitte Lacombe, Lars Eidinger, Alba Rohrwacher, Alex Gibney, Thomas Vinterberg, Denis Côté, Michael Ballhaus, Roy Andersson, Michel Franco and many others.
The programme started on Sunday with this year’s Berlinale Jury President Meryl Streep’s remarkable on-stage conversation. Director Denis Côté encouraged the Talents: “Things happen if you fight for them to happen. If you have a strong personality and a strong personal vision it is going to work at some point.” The following days, the summit explored the multiple dimensions of relations. “Relation is love. It is sex. It is networking. How you relate to people is how you survive in this world,” explained Dogme 95 co-founder Thomas Vinterberg. And returning once again this year, editor Molly M. Steensgard summarized the spirit at Berlinale Talents: “It gives you a strong sense of community. It is also across experiences and across age and across countries, so it is valuable to me to meet people that I wouldn’t meet elsewhere.”
Discovering, Supporting and Developing Talent
This year’s edition was also a tribute to the success of Berlinale Talents, together with the other programme sections of the Berlinale, in discovering, supporting and developing talent in film. 111 alumni participated with 84 films at the Berlin International Film Festival, with many also invited to the summit as experts. With over 50 Talents already having had films at previous Berlinale editions, the participants were also lead to assume a more active role and contributed with their experience in many new formats. “The level of experience was outstanding. Talents, alumni and experts met at eye-level. We are delighted that Berlinale Talents as a leading talent development programme for exchanging ideas and developing film projects was received so enthusiastically” said the heads of Berlinale Talents Christine Tröstrum and Florian Weghorn.
Kickstarter and Berlinale Talents join forces in a network partnership to promote Talents and alumni around the world and help them to bring projects to life. Film professionals with interest in crowdfunding receive exclusive mentorship by the Kickstarter team. Their campaigns are highlighted on a curated partner page and shared in the social media channels of Berlinale Talents and Kickstarter.
The new co-partner Nespresso has launched the vertical video contest “Nespresso Talents 2016”. The competition is open for entries March 7 through April 10, 2016, on www.nespresso.com/talents. Winners will be announced on May 12, 2016 and receive 6,000 Euros each and a trip to the 2016 Cannes Film Festival.
Awards during Berlinale Talents
Once again, prizes were awarded to filmmakers during Berlinale Talents.
Within the framework of the "Talent Project Market", the 10,000 Euros VFF Talent Highlight Pitch Award went to the project Tank, which had been presented by producer Max Serdiuk from the Ukraine. Cash prizes endowed with 1,000 Euros each were awarded for the nomination of their projects to the Argentinian producer Cecilia Salim and the Norwegian producer Gary Cranner.
The Robert Bosch Stiftung awarded during Berlinale Talents film prizes to promote international cooperation between German and Arab filmmakers, endowed with a maximum of 70,000 Euros each:
Animation: Four Acts for Syria by directors Waref Abu Quba and Kevork Mourad, Syria / producer Eva Illmer, Germany.
Documentary: Miguel's War by director and producer Eliane Raheb, Lebanon / producers Lissi Muschol and Margot Haiböck, Germany.
Short Film: Tshweesh by director Feyrouz Serhal, Lebanon / producers Lara Abou Saifan, Lebanon and Stefan Gieren, Germany.
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Berlinale Talents is an initiative of the Berlin International Film Festival, a business division of the Kulturveranstaltungen des Bundes in Berlin GmbH, funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, in cooperation with Creative Europe MEDIA, a programme of the European Union, Robert Bosch Stiftung and Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg.
February 19, 2016