The goEast programme is divided into different sections, each with its own profile: Competition, Symposium, East-West Talent Lab, Open Frame Award, RheinMain Shortfilm Award, an anually changing thematic section, Bioscop, Portrait/Homage (alternately, annually), and Specials.
Each section is curated carefully. Festival correspondents and experts support the programme team. The entries to the competition are nominated by a selection committee. The sections serve to build bridges between Central and Eastern European auteur film and experimental film, from current genre cinema to rediscovered historical films. Documentaries have conquered their rightful place beside the feature films.
16 films (ca. ten feature films and six documentaries mostly german premieres with production years 2019 and 2020 compete for the festival's main awards – the Golden Lily for the Best Film endowed with € 10,000, the Award of the State Capital of Wiesbaden for Best Director and the Award for Cultural Diversity of the Federal Foreign Office. In addition, two FIPRESCI Critics' Prizes will be awarded by members of the International Federation of Film Critics.
Once again the RheinMain Short Film Award will go to a short film. is the award is endowed with 2,500 euros. Eight short films, with a max. length of 15 minutes from different Central and Eastern European countries compete against each other. A jury, this time consisting of cinema managers and programmers from the entire Rhine-Main area, decides together who takes the award. During goEast the filmmakers are invited to take part in the East-West Talent Lab.
With the sections Homage and Portrait (annually alternating), goEast honors filmmakers whose body of work has set highlights in Central and Eastern European film. While the Homage is dedicated to venerable masters, the Portrait focuses on the work of more contemporary filmmakers. Former retrospectives were dedicated to Krzysztof Zanussi, Márta Mészáros, Boris Khlebnikov and Małgorzata Szumowska, amongst many others.
Every year, the interdisciplinary goEast Symposium invites researchers to deepen a topic of social and/or historical relevance. In lectures, discussions and film programs, the understanding of culture and society of our eastern neighbors, will be strengthened. The topics of recent years have been "Reluctant Feminism – Women Filmmakers from Central and Eastern Europe", "Hybrid Identities – Baltic Cinema" and "Constructions of the Other. Roma and the Cinema of Central and Eastern Europe".
goEast's interdisciplinary side bar program brings filmmakers, artists and the audience from the Rhine-Main area together and aims to increase the visibility of Central and Eastern European culture in our region. "High culture" and "popular culture" meet and stimulate each other in order to dissolve their supposed contradictions. 2020 an actual picnic, in cooperation with cultural associations from the Rhine-Main area, is on the agenda, along with various other events in unexpected locations, like an short film tour through Wiesbaden with Eastern European short films, a master classby a renowned filmmaker, a supermarket language course,, a showcase for Eastern European TV series and an exhibition about Meme culture as well as the Instagram project 1m2 by Russian performance artist vreditel_li.
In addition, there will be numerous special events, such as a matinee with a special guest in the Caligari FilmBühne. National film archives, special film festivals and film schools from Eastern Europe will be invited to Wiesbaden to present themselves in film screenings and lectures. The film program will be rounded off by numerous exhibitions, lectures, parties and network events, making the festival a diverse platform for Eastern European culture in and around Wiesbaden.