Oldenburg Partners With Pantaflix to Stream Festival Online

Courtesy of Oldenburg Film Festival
Boxing drama 'In Full Bloom' won the German Independence Award for best film at the 2019 Oldenburg Film Festival

The German indie festival will live-stream this year's premieres on the VOD platform alongside on-sight cinema screenings.

The Oldenburg Film Festival has partnered with local VOD platform Pantaflix to stream this year's festival online.

Oldenburg will hold its 27th edition September 16-20. It will be one of the first international film festivals to be held in the post-COVID-19 era, coming on the heels of the 77th Venice International Film Festival (Sept. 2-12).

Oldenburg plans to combine physical and virtual screenings, holding on-location events and world premieres which will then be streamed on Pantaflix for film fans worldwide. The VOD platform, which includes German film star Matthias Schweighöfer among its backers, specializes in independent and non-English language content. Oldenburg turned down an offer by adult entertainment site Pornhub to host the festival's online presence.

"We know Pantaflix as an innovative platform which has been breaking new ground in distribution for years and offering independent cinema opportunities that are becoming increasingly rare elsewhere," said Oldenburg Festival Director Thorsten Neumann, announcing the partnership.

"We firmly believe that cinema and streaming complement each other perfectly," added Pantaflix Chief Technology Officer Rainer Knebel. "The nice thing is: everyone benefits. Film fans can follow the festival from the comfort of their couch at home without having to give up the magic of the cinema."

Oldenburg prides itself on its edgy independent approach to programming as well as its quirky celebrity tributes and career retrospectives, which in recent years have included Nicolas Cage, Keith Carradine and Asia Argento.

That off-beat approach will inform this year's COVID-19 fest. Instead of its traditional red-carpet events, Oldenburg will present a series of living room premieres, in which local film fans can apply to host the stars of a festival title in their homes.