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German producer Karl Baumgartner, one of the pioneers of the international co-production who has made films which such international arthouse stars as Aki Kaurismaki (Le Havre), Emir Kusturica (Super 8 Stories) and Kim Ki-Duk (Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter…and Spring) will be honored for his life’s work at this year’s Berlin Film Festival with a Berlinale Camera.
Baumgartner has been instrumental in bringing international arthouse to German cinemas through his production and distribution company Pandora Film, which he launched with Reinhard Brundig in 1982. Starting out as a distributor of such titles as Jane Campion‘s Palme d’Or and Oscar-winner The Piano (1993), Baumgartner quickly moved into production – Pandora executive produced Kusturica’s Underground, which won the Palme d’Or in 1995 and has, over the years, delivered a steady stream of festival favorites and sleeper hits.
Baumgartner’s films have appeared in competition in Berlin several times over the years – including Sam Garbarski‘s Irina Palm in 2007, On the Path (2010) from Jasmila Zbanic, Edwin‘s Postcards from the Zoo (2012) and, most recently, with Pia Marais‘ Layla Fourie at last year’s festival.
THR honored Baumgartner, or “Baumi” as he is widely known, in 2012 with The Hollywood Reporter Award for innovation.
Baumgartner will receive his Berlinale Camera at a ceremony on Saturday, Feb. 8. Kaurismaki will present the honor to Baumgartner together with Berlin Festival director Dieter Kosslick. The award ceremony will be followed by a screening of Kaurismaki’s La vie de boheme (1992).
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