BERLIN: Father, a coproduction between Serbia, France, Germany, Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina directed by Srdan Golubović has been selected for the Panorama section of the 70th edition of the Berlin International Film Festival (20 February-1 March 2020). Other minority coproductions from FNE partner countries are also in Panorama, as well as in Berlinale Special.

BERLIN: Three Romanian and Czech productions and two Slovak and Bosnian minority coproductions were selected for Berlinale’s Forum section, which is celebrating its 50 years in 2020. Romanian Radu Jude has two projects selected for this section this year. The 70th edition of the Berlin International Film Festival will be held from 20 February to 1 March 2020.

BERLIN: The international coproduction Malmkrog by Romanian Cristi Puiu will open the new competitive section of the Berlinale (20 February-1 March 2020). The 15 titles lineup includes new films by Slovak Ivan Ostrochovský (Servants) and Polish Mariusz Wilczyński (Kill It and Leave This Town).

BERLIN: Films and TV series from Poland, Lithuania, Slovakia and the Czech Republic are among the new titles announced by the 70th Berlin International Film Festival (20 February-1 March 2020) on 14 January 2020.

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TBILISI: Inhale-Exhale by the acclaimed Georgian-born Berlin-based director Dito Tsintsadze was awarded best feature film at the 20th edition of the Tbilisi International Film Festival. The festival ran from 1 to 8 December 2019.

TALLINN: The Grand Prix of the 23rd Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival went to the Japanese feature film Kontora directed by Anshul Chauhan, while Motherland directed by Tomas Vengris won the Baltic Film Competition. The festival was held from 15 November to 1 December 2019. One of the unique new events this year was the new two day VR workshop sponsored by Film New Europe.

VENICE: Director Steven Soderbergh’s film The Laundromat, which screens in the main competition in Venice, is based on the book Secrecy World: Inside the Panama Papers Investigation of Illicit Money Networks and the Global Elite by Jake Bernstein. The book and a series of exposes articles in 2015 came into being when documents that became known as the Panama Papers were leaked to journalists by someone inside the Panamanian law firm of Mossack Fonseca, one of the world’s largest providers of offshore corporate services. The documents revealed information about more than 200,000 offshore companies and set off an avalanche of scandal and money laundering investigations around the world, although no one is assuming that anything has changed in this system that aides the super-rich in hiding their money from tax-authorities and government officials.

VENICE: American indie filmmaker James Gray is not the first name that springs to mind when you think of a Hollywood sci-fi blockbuster, but Ad Astra, which boasts Hollywood mega-star Brad Pitt in the leading role, is an accomplished film with enough artistic backbone to score a slot in the main competition in Venice.

VENICE: Director Todd Phillips enters the Venice competition lineup with what just might be the first Batman film that is for non-Batman fans. His film Joker takes the usual Hollywood comic book franchise into much deeper and more interesting psychological territory than the usual special effects laden star vehicles. while still managing to deliver all the expected Gotham City sets and characters in full regalia. Set in a thinly disguised New York City of either the late 1970s or the not distant future, when the city is overwhelmed with crime, greed, filth and society’s breakdown, we see the origins of the famous characters of the later films.