Berlinale 2023: history of the Berlin Film Festival, this year’s nominees

Table of contents
MOSCOW, January 26 – Novosti. The 73rd Berlin International Film Festival will take place from 16 to 26 February 2023. This year, 18 films by directors from different countries will be presented in the main competition. The history of the Berlinale, the nominees of 2023 and the winners of past festivals – in the material of Novosti.

International Berlin Film Festival

The Berlin International Film Festival, or Berlinale, is one of the central international film festivals. It has been held annually since 1951 in Berlin . Unlike other film festivals, the Berlinale focuses on a wide geography of participants, the organizers make sure that the program includes films from around the world.
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The main award of the Berlin International Film Festival Golden Bear - Novosti, 1920, 01/26/2023
The main award of the Berlin International Film Festival “Golden Bear”


In 1951, West Berlin was under the “trusteeship” of three countries – the USA , Great Britain and France . Then they decided to show film premieres at the Berlinale. At that time, the jury consisted exclusively of Germans, but a few years later it was decided to invite experts from different countries so that there was less bias. Already in 1956, the Berlinale festival was already held with an international jury. Since then, every year in Berlin, more than 50 participants from all over the world present their film works.
Over the years, the Berlinale jury has recognized the talent of directors who are now considered classics: Roman Polanski , Ingmar Bergman, Akira Kurosawa , Francois Truffaut and others. Until 1975, Soviet cinema was not presented at the festival, but then the situation changed. And 24 years after the first Berlinale, the picture of the Russian director Sergei Solovyov “One Hundred Days After Childhood” took part in it, which was awarded the “Silver Bear” for the best director’s work.
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Main awards

The main awards of the Berlin International Film Festival can be roughly divided into two large groups: the Golden Bear and Silver Bear series of prizes. The first series includes:
  • prize for the best feature film;
  • for the best short film;
  • Honorary “Golden Bear” for lifetime achievement.
The Silver Bear series of awards includes:
  • Grand Prix of the Jury (given for the second place in the main competition);
  • prize for the best director’s work;
  • for the best male role;
  • for the best female role;
  • for outstanding contribution to cinema;
  • for the best music for the film;
  • for the best script;
  • Alfred Bauer Prize – awarded for “discovering new paths in the art of cinema.”
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Figurines of the Silver Bear at the awards ceremony of the Berlin International Film Festival Berlinale - Novosti, 1920, 01/26/2023
Silver Bear figurines at the awards ceremony of the Berlin International Film Festival “Berlinale”

Awards from an independent jury

An independent jury means experts who are not associated with the organizers of the competition. Among their awards are:
  • Ecumenical Jury Prize. Awarded both for the artistic component of the film, and for the disclosure of religious, social and humanistic issues;
  • FIPRESCI Award;
  • Shooting Stars Award. Awarded to young European actors.

Other prizes

In addition to prizes from the gold and silver “bear” series, the festival established such nominations as:
  • ● Prize for “Best Debut”;
  • ● Best Screenplay;
  • ● The best work of the artist;
  • ● Crystal bear;
  • ● Bronze bear;
  • ● Special award;
  • ● Special Jury Prize;
  • ● Special Jury Mentions;
  • ● Blue Angel;
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Symbol of the 69th Berlin International Film Festival - Novosti, 1920, 01/26/2023
Symbol of the 69th Berlin International Film Festival
  • ● Honorary Silver Prize;
  • ● Prize of foreign delegations;
  • ● Award for personal achievement;
  • ● Prize for personal achievement;
  • ● Career Award;
  • ● Prize for creativity;
  • ● Prize for script and work with actors;
  • ● Prize for artistic contribution;
  • ● Prize for artistic merit.

Rules and requirements for films

The Berlinale has the following requirements for participating films:
  • filming must be completed within 12 months before the start of the festival;
  • foreign films must have a world or international premiere, but films shown at national festivals are allowed;
  • German films must have a premiere screening at the festival (with the exception of films selected for the German Film Perspective program);
  • television format, production films and advertising are not allowed to participate in the competition;
  • the duration of feature films must be at least 60 minutes, short films – up to 30 minutes;
  • films must be in their original language and have English subtitles (if the original language is different).
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As for the general provisions, the main ones can be distinguished:
  • to participate in the festival, you must pay a fee for administrative costs: in 2022, the amount was 175 euros for feature films and 75 euros for short films;
  • in order to participate, you must fill out an online application and provide complete information about the film, cast, crew and indicate all the contacts of the manufacturing company;
  • short films (up to 30 minutes) can be submitted to the competition online, physical copies are accepted on DVD and film.
Full requirements and regulations of the festival can be found on the official website .

Berlin Film Festival in 2023

The 73rd Berlin International Festival will take place in 2023. It will start on February 16th and end on February 26th. Unlike the previous two, it will be held completely offline and without restrictions associated with the pandemic. The slogan of the festival this year is Let’s Get Together. It is already known that American actress Kristen Stewart will become president of the jury , and American director Steven Spielberg will receive the Honorary Golden Bear for his contribution to cinema. The festival will open with Rebecca Miller’s “Come to Me Baby” painting. Also, for the first time in the history of the Berlinale, a prize for the best series will be awarded.
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This year, 18 films will take part in the main competition, and 16 in the Encounters program.
Nominee for the main competition:
  • – “20,000 varieties of bees” (directed by Estibalis Urresola Solaguren);
  • − “Disco Boy” (Giacomo Abbruzzese);
  • − “Tower without a shadow” (Zhang Lu);
  • − Blackberry (Matt Johnson);
  • − “Until the end of the night” (Christoph Hochheusler);
  • − “Ingeborg Bachmann – Journey to the Desert” (Margaret von Trotta);
  • − “Great Chariot” (Philippe Garrel);
  • − “Limbo” (Ivan Sen);
  • – “One day we will tell each other everything” (Emily Atef);
  • – “Music” (Angela Shanelek);
  • − “Bad life” (Juan Canijo);
  • − “Red sky (lit)” (Christian Petzold);
  • − “Manodrome” (John Trengov);
  • − “On the Adamant” (Nicolas Philibert);
  • − “Past Lives” (Celine Son);
  • − “Suzume closes the doors” (Makoto Shinkai);
  • − Survival of Kindness (Rolf de Heer);
  • − “Totem” (Lila Aviles).
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Berlinale winners

Every year at the Berlin Film Festival, many different prizes and awards are given out, but only a few films are awarded the most prestigious ones.

In 2022

The winners of the main competition and the Encounters program in 2022 are:
● “Alcarraz”, directed by Carla Simon – “Golden Bear”;
● “Writer’s Film” directed by Hong Sang-soo – “Silver Bear” (Grand Prix of the Jury);
● “Fire”, director Claire Denis – “Silver Bear” for the best director’s work;
● “Mantle of Gems”, directed by Natalia Lopez Gallardo – “Silver Bear” (special prize);
● “Rabiye Kurnaz vs. George Bush “, directed by Laila Stiller – Silver Bear for Best Screenplay (Laila Stiller), Silver Bear for Best Actor (Meltem Kaptan);
● “Before, now and then”, directed by Camila Andini – “Silver Bear” for Best Supporting Actress (Laura Basuki);
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● “Everything will be alright” directed by Rithi Panh – “Silver Bear” for outstanding artistic contribution;
● “Restless”, directed by Cyril Scheublin – the best director’s work in the competition Encounters;
● “Until Friday, Robinson” directed by Mitra Farahani – Encounters Special Jury Prize.

In 2021

List of winners in the main categories of the Berlin Film Festival in 2021:
● “Crazy Movie for Adults”, directed by Radu Jude – “Golden Bear”;
● “Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy”, directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi – “Silver Bear” (Grand Prix of the Jury);
● “Mr. Backmann and his class”, directed by Maria Shpet – “Silver Bear” (special prize);
● “Natural Light”, directed by Denesh Nagy – “Silver Bear” for Best Director;
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● “I’m your man”, directed by Maria Schrader – “Silver Bear” for the best role (Maren Eggert);
● “Forest: I See You Everywhere”, directed by Benedek Flihauf – Silver Bear for Best Supporting Actress (Lilla Kitzlinger);
● “Introduction” directed by Hong Sang-soo – “Silver Bear” for the best screenplay;
● Ibran Assaoud for editing “Police Movie” – “Silver Bear” for outstanding artistic contribution;
● “We”, directed by Alice Diop – the main prize of the program Encounters;
● “Social Hygiene”, directed by Denis Côté – Best Director in Encounters;
● The Girl and the Spider, directed by Ramon Zürcher and Sylvan Zürcher, Best Director in Encounters;
● “Taste”, directed by Le Bao – special prize of the jury of the program Encounters.
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