Thursday, February 15, 2007

Berlinale Roars Toward Finale

The 57th annual Berlinale Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin started Feb. 8 and runs through Feb. 18.

Berlinale is Germany’s biggest film festival. In its second week, the festival is reaching a feverish pitch with a distribution deal landing for actress-turned-director Julie Delpy’s 2 Days in Paris, with Samuel Goldwyn Films.

Berlinale's film programme is divided into six sections: Competition, Panorama, International Forum of New Cinema, Generation, Perspektive Deutsches Kino and Retrospective. Each section is headed by a section director, who is responsible for selecting the films and is advised by the Berlinale's correspondents and other experts.

This year’s international jury consists of seven members from the film industry, and they consider films only in the competition section, awarding the festival’s main prizes. Prizes include the Golden Bear for best film and Silver Bears for Jury Grand Prix, Best Director, Best Actress and Actor, outstanding artistic contribution and Best Film Music. The Alfred Bauer Prize is given to a work which “takes the art of film in a new direction.”

The 2007 jury includes American Gigolo director Paul Schrader as jury president, Palestinian actress Hiram Abbass, German actor Mario Adorf, American actor Willem Dafoe, Mexican actor Gael GarcĂ­a Bernal (at right), Hong Kong producer Nansun Shi and Danish film editor Molly Malene Stensgaard.

Berlinale’s website offers live streaming video and archives of news conferences and red carpet events at

Awards are presented the final day of the festival, Feb. 18.

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