Jun 22, 2021
Berlinale Summer Special: A Fantastic New Beginning for Cinema
The 71st Berlin International Film Festival was brought to a successful close on June 20. Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the 2021 Berlinale was split up into two events: The first stage of the festival took place online from March 1-5, and was aimed primarily at film industry professionals and press. The Berlinale Summer Special, which received support from the Berlin Senate as a pilot project with mandatory testing, gave Berlin audiences the chance to finally see the Berlinale films on the big screen.
“We’re very pleased that we held onto our plan for a summer event. After months of cultural standstill, the Berlinale Summer Special was truly a grand event and a total success. The demand was phenomenal and the festival atmosphere was consistently enthusiastic and inspiring. We thank the audiences and the filmmakers for their active participation and remarkable reception. A special thanks also goes out to all participating Berlin cinemas, whose collaboration helped us kick off a wonderful Berlin summer of cinema with the Summer Special. And last but not least, we thank Federal Commissioner for Culture and the Media Monika Grütters for the additional funding through NEUSTART KULTUR, which made the two-stage Berlinale concept possible in the first place,” comment the Berlinale directors, Mariette Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian.
126 films were shown in 193 screenings at 16 venues all over Berlin during this year’s programme. 60,410 tickets were sold, bringing the total usage to 92.16 percent. For Berlin audiences, being able to enjoy the Berlinale films outdoors in warm weather was a very special experience. An outdoor cinema was constructed just for the Berlinale Summer Special at Museum Island, framed by the Television Tower and the Berlin Cathedral. In addition to the film premieres, the venue also hosted the opening ceremony, the awards ceremony, the event honouring the European Shooting Stars and the presentation of the 2021 Berlinale Competition Audience Award.
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, numerous film teams - more than 330 guests - travelled to Berlin to present their films and engage in dialogue with the audience.
The 72nd Berlin International Film Festival will take place from February 10-20, 2022.
June 22, 2021