In the last few years, the films shown at the Berlin International Film Festival have increasingly been delivered and screened in digital formats. That trend continues in 2017 – almost all of the more than 2,500 screenings at the Berlinale and the European Film Market will originate from Digital Cinema Packages (DCP).
The Berlinale occupies a unique and innovative position compared to film festivals worldwide at this digital cinema frontier, which would not be possible without a modern, temporary infrastructure enabled by IT and cinema technology companies. ARRI, Colt Technology Services, Dell EMC, Dolby, Aspera – an IBM company and Barco, as well as Rohde & Schwarz together form a well-rehearsed team of partners who support the Berlinale with digital cinema products and services that are essential to realizing the festival.
Telecommunications company Colt Technology Services provides the fibre optic network and collocation services at its Berlin data centre; from there the DCP files are sent to the festival’s more than 60 screens. The Berlinale network now has a total bandwidth of more than 100 gigabits per second, which is used during the festival to transfer a total of approximately one petabyte of data. For the first time this year, the software-defined networking is implemented into the system, allowing flexible adjustments of transmission bandwidths to respond to demand.
That enormous volume of data is stored on a cluster of six Isilon storage systems by Dell EMC, making it easily accessible and fully redundant. The more than 1,000 DCP copies reside on 550 terabytes of storage distributed across more than 200 hard drives.
Since 2002, ARRI has been responsible for the creation and processing of the beloved Berlinale trailer in all its versions and formats; the trailer will be shown in a 4K, high frame rate format.
Dolby provides the Berlinale with sound equipment, digital cinema servers and technical support. Since 2015, the Berlinale Palast has been equipped with the Dolby ATMOS immersive audio technology. And for the first time this year, the Berlinale will be using Dolby’s Fidelio wireless audio system to make selected screenings accessible to the hearing and /or visually impaired.
Aspera – an IBM company will once again provide the Faspex software to allow high-speed data transfer from distributors and production companies all over the world to the Berlinale servers at Colt’s data centre. Thanks to the ten gigabits per second Internet connection at the Colt facility, the DCP for a feature length film can be transferred in about 30 minutes. More and more production companies make use of network-based, encrypted film delivery, sparing themselves and the festival having to deal with tapes or hard drives.
As some productions do not deliver their films as DCPs, but as video tapes or files the Berlinale relies on the proven technology of post-production company Rohde & Schwarz to screen those films. The Berlinale Film Office team uses the encoding system R&S Venice, R&S SpycerBox and R&S CLIPSTER® to quickly and securely convert the various formats into encrypted DCP files.
And once again, the manufacturer of DCI-certified projectors, Barco will be supporting the Berlinale with five DLP projectors from its DP4K-32B and DP4K-23B series. Those 4K projectors will be used in the Berlinale Palast and the Friedrichstadt-Palast, among other venues, to deliver crystal-clear, high-quality pictures to screens as wide as 22 metres.
Twelve New International Novels Ripe for Screen Adaptation
On February 14, film producers attending “Books at Berlinale” will have the chance to discover twelve new literary works that lend themselves perfectly for adaptation to the screen. The selected novels will be presented at a pitching session in the framework of the Berlinale Co-Production Market. At a get-together following the session, the invited producers will be able to join in conversation with respected, internationally active literary agents and representatives of publishing houses who hold the film rights to the works in question. There they can establish and cultivate contacts in the international book world or perhaps even begin to negotiate right away to option the film rights to one or more of the selected books.
The twelve literary works that make up the selection at this year’s edition of “Books at Berlinale” come from publishers and agencies from Belgium, Brazil, Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. More than 130 works from over 30 countries were submitted for consideration in the program.
In addition to the brand-new novels of best-selling authors Martin Suter (Switzerland) and Herman Koch of the Netherlands, whose international hit “Het Dinner” (“The Dinner”) is represented this year in the Berlinale Competition in a screen adaptation starring Richard Gere, and a new work from multiple prize-winning Kurdish author Bachtyar Ali, the selection presents a broad spectrum of themes and genres with a high potential for adaptation to the screen.
The selected novels deal with urgent contemporary questions such as the potential consequences of genetic manipulation, with dystopian scenarios arising after the extinction of bees, but also with child heroes who grow into crusaders against evil along with a group of mascots in one particularly comedic instance. Beyond that, they relate epic historical sagas based on real persons and events: German POWs in American camps at the end of the Second World War; the opalescent life story of banker Hugo Simon, companion of Thomas Mann and many other artists, who was forced to flee from Berlin with his family into exile in Brazil; and the daughter of James Joyce, who, engaged to Samuel Beckett, moved through Paris of the 1920s as a dancer in search of her destiny.
“Books at Berlinale” has been organized annually by the Berlinale in co-operation with the Frankfurt Book Fair since 2006.
“With ‘Books at Berlinale’, we have been able, together with the Frankfurt Book Fair, to create an event with a large network, which promotes co-operation in the area of literary adaptations, which themselves represent an important part of the film production world,” according to Berlinale Director Dieter Kosslick.
Film producers who are active in the area of literary adaptations (or would like to be) as well as publishers and literary agents can register to participate in the event until February 8 at email@example.com.
“Books at Berlinale” takes place in the Berlin House of Representatives in the framework of the Berlinale Co-Production Market. Primary partners of the Berlinale Co-Production Market are MDM – Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung and Creative Europe – MEDIA, a programme of the European Union. The Berlinale Co-Production Market is a part of the European Film Market (EFM).
The following works have been selected for “Books at Berlinale” 2017:
(in alphabetical order by company presenting the film)
In the tenth year of their existence, the “EFM Industry Debates” (February 10 to 12) will once again bring together high-calibre international experts to discuss current topics of interest, trends and perspectives for the rapidly changing film industry. The first panel discussion addresses the question to what extent digital distribution can be advantageous, in particular for independent film producers. The second debate focuses on the film industry in the Arab world and its challenges and potential. Finally, the significance and necessity of innovations in the field of film sales and marketing will be treated within the scope of the third debate.
The event is being presented for the sixth time by the IFA, the leading global trade show for consumer electronics and home appliances, the official host of the “EFM Industry Debates”.
The discussion series is organized in co-operation with the international trade magazines Screen International, The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. The “EFM Industry Debates” will take place on Friday, February 10; Saturday, February 11 and Sunday, February 12, from 4.00 to 5.00 pm at the Gropius Mirror Restaurant. Friday, Feb 10, 2017, 4.00–5.00 pm
Online Distribution: Promise and Reality In co-operation with The Hollywood Reporter
Online distribution promises to be the savior of the independent production industry, providing a long-tail global audience for even the most niche art house films and TV productions.
But how does the promise of online distribution match up to the reality? How can independent producers best use the Internet to both finance productions and recoup on their investment? And how can an indie producer or director assess the real value of their films on the global market?
Moderation: Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter Saturday, Feb 11, 2017, 4.00-5.00 pm
New Prospects: Challenges and Opportunities in the Arab Film Industry In co-operation with Variety
The Arab world is growing significantly as a market and producer of films. But growth has been uneven, with screens and investment increasing in areas like the Gulf but lagging in countries such as Egypt. Meanwhile, Arab producers and directors face creative and commercial challenges as pay-TV and SVOD gain ground. What are the region’s prospects? The panel will present fresh data on Arab cinema and discuss how best to navigate a growing but tricky market.
Moderation: Nick Vivarelli, Variety
Sunday, Feb 12, 2017, 4.00-5.00 pm
Market Innovation 2017: How To Get Things Moving? In co-operation with Screen International
With its new “EFM Horizon” platform, the EFM offers various initiatives focusing on the film industry of the future. “EFM Horizon” sets out to help discover the latest technological developments and forward-looking trends and to take advantage of networks in sectors bordering the audio-visual industry. The panel introduces entrepreneurs with strategies that will shape the future in distribution and marketing of films and potentially attract new audiences. The new “Propellor Film Tech Hub,” of which EFM is a founding partner, is setting up an incubator program for the development of new distribution and marketing prototypes, and will present its strategy for 2017 and 2018.
Moderation: Wendy Mitchell, contributing editor at Screen International.
Admission to the “EFM Industry Debates” is free of charge for owners of the market badge. The “EFM Industry Debates” will be followed every day by a networking cocktail hour.
36 Attractive Feature Film Projects Searching for International Partners at the Berlinale Co-Production Market
At the 14th edition of the Berlinale Co-Production Market (February 12 to 15, 2017) a selection of 36 promising feature-film projects from 29 countries will come together with a wide range of potential co-production and funding partners from around the world. In addition, the market will be presenting several respected production companies in the scope of their exclusive “Company Matching Programme”.
To aid the producers of the selected projects and companies, the Berlinale Co-Production Market team is organizing a total of approximately 1,200 one-on-one meetings with interested potential partners from a participant pool made up of 550 producers, world sales agents, broadcasters, distributors, film funds and financiers from all across the world.
For the official project selection, 20 promising feature-film projects with budgets ranging from 750,000 euros to eleven million euros were chosen from a total of 323 submissions. They will be presented by internationally experienced producers and have all either already secured production funding from their native countries or have at least been able to cover 30% of their projected financing needs to date.
In the scope of the “Rotterdam Berlinale Express”, three additional film projects will take part both in the CineMart Rotterdam and the Berlinale Co-Production Market.
Ten newcomers to the world of international film production will also be presenting their projects at the “Talent Project Market”, which is organized in co-operation with Berlinale Talents. These attendees were chosen from an additional 178 submitted projects.
Among the directors of the selected projects are familiar names such as Hans Petter Moland (In Order of Disappearance, A Somewhat Gentle Man, The Beautiful Country), whose films have already been featured three times in the official Berlinale programme, Agnieszka Holland, whose most recent film Spoor is celebrating its premiere at this year’s Berlinale, as well as further directors of Competition films from the past years, including for instance Lou Ye (Blind Massage), Celina Murga (The Third Side of the River), Anne Zohra Berrached (24 Weeks) and Laura Bispuri (Sworn Virgin).
In the category “Berlinale Directors”, three projects from directors whose previous films were shown at the Berlinale will be presented; though these productions are still in a very early stage of development from a financing perspective, they are considered so promising that they can already benefit from finding co-operation partners in order to ease their way to the big screen.
In addition to the meetings with potential partners, which are arranged individually to satisfy the concrete needs of each project, there are also three awards available: the Eurimages Co-Production Development Award, worth 20,000 euros, the VFF Talent Highlight Award, worth 10,000 euros, and the ARTE International Prize, worth 6,000 euros, will all be given away at the Berlinale Co-Production Market.
The four already confirmed companies featured in the “Company Matching Programme” come from Germany, France, Israel and Norway. The 550 other participants can also request one-on-one meetings with them in order to exchange information on a structural level or on the basis of project slates and move towards exploring the possibility of long-term co-operation.
There are at least two films screening in the festival programme of the upcoming Berlinale which were presented at the Berlinale Co-Production Market as projects in previous years and met partners: Una mujer fantástica (A fantastic woman) by Sebastián Lelio, which is part of the Competition, and Mulher do pai (Nalu on the Border) by Cristiane Oliveira, which is being shown in Generation 14plus.
The primary partners of the Berlinale Co-Production Market are the MDM – Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung and Creative Europe MEDIA, a programme of the European Union.
The Berlinale Co-Production Market is a part of the European Film Market.
The Berlin House of Representatives, which is located right across from the European Film Market in the Martin-Gropius-Bau, will once again serve as a co-operation partner and main venue for the event.
Official project selection for Berlinale Co-Production Market 2017
(in alphabetical order by production company):
– Where the Summer Went (D: Beatriz Sanchis), Animal de Luz Films, Mexico
– Psychobitch (D: Martin Lund), Ape&Bjørn, Norway
– 7500 (D: Patrick Vollrath), Augenschein Filmproduktion, Germany
– Irene (D: Celina Murga), Cepa Audiovisual & Tresmilmundos Cine, Argentina
– The Ski Jumper Who Didn’t Want to Land (D: Hans Petter Moland), Chezville & Storyline Studios, Norway
– Overgod (D: Gabriel Mascaro), Desvia Produções, Brazil
– Clear Blue (D: Lindsay MacKay), Devonshire Productions, Canada
– Man’s Fate (D: Lou Ye), Dream Factory, China & Chinese Shadows, Hong Kong, China
– The Deer (D: Bogdan George Apetri), Fantascope, Romania
– The Monster Within (D: Rodrigo Susarte), Forastero, Chile
– Lost Country (D: Vladimir Perisic), KinoElektron, France, Trilema, Serbia & MPM Film, France
– Benigno Cruz (D: Jorge Hernandez Aldana), La Pandilla Producciones, Venezuela & Lucía Films & Paloma Negra Films, Mexico
– Eloe (D: Piotr Złotorowicz), Lava Films, Poland
– Charlatan (D: Agnieszka Holland), Marlene Film Production, Czech Republic
– A Film by Verner Holm (D: Jannik Johansen), Profile Pictures, Denmark
– Blanquita (D: Fernando Guzzoni), QuijoteRampante, Chile
– Paloma’s Wedding (D: Marcelo Gomes), Rec Produtores, Brazil
– Waiting for an Angel (D: Akin Omotoso), Rififi Pictures, South Africa & Triptych Media, Canada
– Dead Noon (D: Jeff Desom), Samsa Film, Luxembourg
– Daughter of Mine (D: Laura Bispuri), Vivo Film, Italy
“Berlinale Directors” projects:
– Ten Thousand Happiness (D: Johnny Ma), Image X Productions, China
– Colour of the Skull (D: Sibs Shongwe-La Mer), Mille et Une Productions, France
– Zorro (D: Ronny Trocker), Zischlermann Filmproduktion, Germany
“Rotterdam Berlinale Express”:
– Girls of the Sun (D: Eva Husson), Maneki Films, France
– Jumpman (D: Ivan I. Tverdovsky), New People Film Company, Russia
– The Wife of the Pilot (D: Anne Zohra Berrached), Razor Film Produktion, Germany
“Talent Project Market” – projects and selected production talents (in alphabetical order by production company):
– The Deposit (P: Eva Sigurdardottir), Askja Films, Iceland
– MNK Boy (P: Aydin Dehzad), Kaliber Film, Netherlands / Turkey
– Shock Labor (P: Maria Carla del Rio), Marinca Filmes, Cuba
– The Bus to Amerika (P: Nefes Polat), Mars Production, Turkey
– The Space Between (P: Angela Lee), Nifty Pictures, USA
– Memoryland (P/D: Quy Bui), Pixelholic Media, Vietnam
– Tomorrow is a Long Time (P: Jeremy Chua), Potocol, Singapore
– Never the Bright Lights (P: Tonee Acejo), Quiapost Productions, Philippines
– You Will Die at Twenty (P: Hossam Elouan), Transit Films, Egypt / Sudan
– Breaking Surface (P: Julia Gebauer), Way Creative Films, Sweden
Company Matching (in alphabetical order by company):
Black Sheep Film Productions, Israel
Haut et Court, France
Mer Film, Norway
Weydemann Bros., Germany