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The 2023 Berlin International Film Festival has unveiled the in-development projects vying for financing and production partners at this year’s co-production market, with 33 projects from 26 countries selected.
Highlights include The Blindsight, the latest from Ukraine director Ruslan Batytskyi (A Rising Fury), from 2Brave Productions; Peeled Skin from Leonie Krippendorff (Fucking Berlin), which Germany’s Kineo Filmproduktion is producing; and Tales from the Golden Age 3, a feature from Romanian director Ioana Uricaru (Lemonade) and producers Mobra Films and 42 Film.
In the coming weeks, Berlin’s co-production market team will organize individual meetings between producers and potential partners for this year’s event, which runs Feb. 18-22.
The Berlinale co-production market has a strong track record in securing financing and completion funds for indie projects. Recent success stories include the last two Berlin Golden Bear winners, Alcarràs and Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn, as well as Oscar winners A Fantastic Woman by Sebastián Lelio and Taika Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit.
Berlin on Monday also announced its Perspektive Deutsches Kino program of German cinema from first-time or upcoming young directors. The 2023 Perspektive lineup includes Steffi Niederzoll’s documentary Seven Winters in Tehran, which follows the imprisonment and eventual execution of a young student hanged for stabbing a man who had tried to rape her. Fiction entries include Bones and Names from Fabian Stumm, Elaha by Milena Aboyan, Ararat by Engin Kundag, and The Kidnapping of the Bride by Sophia Mocorrea. The films in the Berlinale sidebar will compete for the Heiner Carow Prize and the Compass-Perspektive-Award, which come with cash bursaries of 5,000 euro ($5,300) each.
For this year’s Berlinale Retrospective, the festival has asked acclaimed directors to pick their favorite “coming-of-age” film. Among the titles that will be screened are Bernardo Bertolucci’s Before the Revolution (1964), picked by Martin Scorsese; the John Hughes-directed Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986), selected by Capernaum director Nadine Labaki; and Wes Anderson’s pick: the 1953 feature Little Fugitive from directors Ray Ashley, Morris Engel, and Ruth Orkin. Filmmakers Pedro Almodóvar, Luca Guadagnino, Ava DuVernay, Juliette Binoche, M. Night Shyamalan, Tilda Swinton, Wim Wenders and others also selected films for the retrospective.
The 73rd Berlinale, which runs Feb. 16-26, also announced the newly restored prints it will screen as part of this year’s Berlinale Classics lineup. Among those will be the 4K restoration of David Cronenberg’s Naked Lunch (1991), which will open the Berlinale Classics section. Other highlights include Nanni Moretti’s Sweet Dreams (1981), the rediscovered Twilight (1990), from Hungarian director György Fehér, and Oliver Schmitz’s Mapantsula (1998), the first South African film to screen as part of the Berlinale Classics selection.
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