MDM-Funded Films Scoop Up 3 Awards at 70th Berlin International Film Festival
The German camera operator Jürgen Jürges was awarded the Silver Bear for an "outstanding artistic contribution" to the MDM-funded Drama "DAU. Natasha" by Ilya Khrzhanovskiy and Jekaterina Oertel. In the Panorama section, the Drama "Father" ("Otac") by Serbian director Srdan Golubovic picked up both the audience award and the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury.
Claas Danielsen, CEO of Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung (MDM), comments: "I’d like to congratulate the crews of both these winning films, which reflect MDM’s long-standing commitment to a strong Eastern European cinema. I’m extraordinarily pleased with the recognition earned by the outstanding camera operator Jürgen Jürges, whose career has included collaborations with big names such as Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Wim Wenders, and Michael Haneke. Furthermore, I am thrilled that director Srdan Golubovic was able to capture the audience with his poignant Panorama entry "Father". Finally, I want to congratulate the new Berlin International Film Festival directors Mariette Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian on having successfully run their first edition."
The internationally produced film "DAU. Natasha" forms part of a large series of works named "DAU", which is inspired by the life of physicist and Nobel Prize winner Lev Landau and portrays people’s experiences in a secret Soviet research institution between 1938 and 1968. The film, which mainly deals with subjects such as dependence and power, revolves around Natasha (Natalia Berezhnaya), a cafeteria server who starts an illicit affair with a scientist visiting from France. The experimental drama is co-produced by the Berlin, Ukraine, UK, and Russia members of the Phenomen group.
"Father" ("Otac") tells the story of the taciturn day laborer Nikola, who is fighting to be granted custody for both of his children. The Ecumenical Jury praised the protagonist’s qualities, notably his inspiring, unwavering struggle for justice, which he never, even in the face of great adversity, pursues at the expense of others. The drama co-produced by the Serbian Film House Bas Celik and Leipzig-based Neue Mediopolis, ASAP Film, Propeler Film, Vertigo, SCCA/Pro.Ba, and the ZDF and Arte TV networks, deeply impressed festivalgoers, who handed "Father" the Panorama audience award. The road movie, which is based on a true story, will be brought to German movie theaters in fall of 2020 by Barnsteiner-Film.
In addition, the serial Project "Transitniki" by Rohfilm Factory (based in Leipzig) won the pitch at the "CoPro Series 2020" event held in the context of the festival’s Co-Production Market. This affords producer Karsten Stöter the opportunity to present his project, which deals with young GDR citizens traveling illegally across the Soviet Union, to prospective international partners at the Lille Séries Mania, the series festival with the most impact worldwide.
A total of three MDM-funded films were featured in the official program of this year’s International Berlin Film Festival, with another 12 films screening in the LOLA@Berlinale side program.
For more information, please contact Dr. Ulf Lepelmeier, head of Press and Public Relations (phone: +49 (0)341 2698714, email: Ulf.Lepelmeier@mdm-online.de).