The 16th Edition of goEast - Festival of Central and Eastern European Film Aims to Raise Awareness and Promote Co-operation Across Cultures
From 20th to 26th April 2016, goEast - Festival of Central and Eastern European Film will lure numerous cinephiles to Wiesbaden, Germany. In light of the current political climate in Europe, the festival, hosted by Deutsches Filminstitut, will once again place an emphasis on cultural co-operation in its 16th edition and further deepen its commitment to promoting a filmmaking ethos dedicated to advancing the cause of human rights. In addition, this year's programme will take a fresh look at genre cinema from the East and feature its usual diverse selection of the very best current film productions that the region has to offer.
Cinema of Striking Originality:
The Competition for Fiction Features and Documentaries
Creative, quite often critical and always something special - those are the shared characteristics that distinguish the 16 current productions from Central and Eastern Europe that will be competing for awards in the Competition for Fiction Features and Documentaries. The official selection ranges from auteur and arthouse works all the way to genre films, all possessed of startling originality and among the very best productions of the past two years. The range of topics is broad, although these films for the most part reflect the mood and current state of society in their respective countries of origin. The ten fiction features and six documentaries all have a chance at winning three generously funded awards: the Award for Best Film, endowed with prize money of 10,000 euros, the Award of the City of Wiesbaden for Best Director (7,500 euros) as well as the Award of the Federal Foreign Office for Cultural Diversity (4,000 euros), all of which are chosen by a star-studded international jury. In addition, one fiction feature will also have the honour of receiving the International Film Critic's Award, presented by a special jury representing FIPRESCI.
In connection with the East-West Talent Lab, a platform for the promotion of up-and-coming filmmakers and artists, the Experimental Film and Video Art Competition will also be taking place once again. Young artists and filmmakers from Central and Eastern Europe, as well as from Hessen's film and art academies, will present current works here and compete for the Open Frame Award, funded by BHF-BANK Foundation with a prize of 5,000 euros.
For the Love of Genre: The goEast Portrait and Symposium
The Portrait offers a slice of Polish cinema history this year: The retrospective is dedicated to Juliusz Machulski, the famed director, scriptwriter and producer of some of the most successful Polish productions of the past 35 years. With their adept balancing act between Western genre styles and a biting, socially critical sense of humour, the films of this graduate of the National Film School in Lódz already managed to strike a nerve upon their original release back in the day - today they are considered to be cult classics for the exact same reason.
This year's Symposium is also devoted to genre cinema: Under the title "In the Shadows: Crime and the Daily Grind in Central and Eastern European Genre Cinema post 1945", the section is dedicated to Germany's favourite genre - here in its Eastern European manifestation - and will present fresh regional takes on the classic crime film that are still widely unknown in these parts.
Committed to Creating a Better Society:
Beyond Belonging and OPPOSE OTHERING!
This year, Beyond Belonging once again takes up the banner of socio-political change: Under the heading "Us and Them? Otherness and Othering", the section turns its attention to the phenomenon of misanthropy directed at groups, otherwise known as "othering". In a selection of fiction features and documentaries, media works and classics, the topic will be examined in all its diverse manifestations - from subtle forms of ethnic exclusion all to way to violent homophobia.
With its focus on this subject, the section's programme this year is also linked to a very special pilot project, which goEast is proud to introduce together with Foundation "Remembrance, Responsibility and Future" (EVZ): OPPOSE OTHERING! This project for the promotion of young talent aims to give young filmmakers from Germany as well as Central and Eastern Europe the opportunity to use the means of cinema to investigate the phenomenon of othering in bilateral two-person teams. Workshops to take place over the course of the festival week will serve to prepare the cross-cultural partners for their work together. At the conclusion of the programme, five of the participating duo teams will be awarded with production grants of 3,000 euros per team to help realise their projects.
Established Platforms for Promoting Young Artists:
East-West Talent Lab and Young Filmmakers for Peace
Thus, with the newest addition, the number of different projects for promoting young talent organised by the festival has now grown to a grand total of three: The newly launched OPPOSE OTHERING! project, the project Young Filmmakers for Peace, funded by the Robert Bosch Stiftung, and the well-established East-West Talent Lab.
In the scope of Young Filmmakers for Peace, up-and-coming filmmakers from conflict and post-conflict regions in Eastern Europe and the Arab world as well as Germany will come together to investigate what it means to make films on and in times of conflict.
The East-West Talent Lab on the other hand, made possible with the support of Kulturfonds Frankfurt RheinMain and BHF-BANK Foundation, is focussed on providing opportunities for participants to build networks, exchange ideas and hone core professional skills. Talented young filmmakers and artists from Central and Eastern Europe as well as Germany (with an emphasis on the Rhine-Main region) flesh out their project ideas here together and then present them to an expert jury. The best pitch is honoured with the goEast Development Award, with prize money totalling 3,000 euros.
goEast - Festival of Central and Eastern European Film is hosted by Deutsches Filminstitut and supported by numerous partners. The festival is primarily funded by the Hessen State Ministry of Higher Education, Research and the Arts, the State Capital Wiesbaden, Foundation "Remembrance, Responsibility and Future", the Robert Bosch Stiftung, Kulturfonds Frankfurt RheinMain, ŠKODA AUTO Deutschland, BHF-BANK Foundation, the Adolf und Luisa Haeuser-Stiftung für Kunst und Kulturpflege, the Federal Foreign Office, the Foundation for Polish-German Cooperation, Deutsch-Tschechischer Zukunftsfonds and Renovabis. Media partners include among others 3sat, FAZ, hr-iNFO and sensor.