Impressions of the 32nd FilmFestival Cottbus

Impressions of the 32nd FilmFestival Cottbus

The best impressions of the 32nd FilmFestival Cottbus: browse through the galleries and review a week full of special films, impressive encounters, inspiring conversations and glamorous performances!

The 32nd FilmFestival Cottbus was unofficially opened on Monday evening with the 20th Lausitzer FilmSchau.

20. Lausitzer FilmSchau voller Sall hinten @Goethe

Numerous film fans flocked to the Weltspiegel. Antenne Brandenburg presenter Aline Lepsch led the evening. 18 films competed for the coveted prizes. The jury, consisting of Annelie Tschemmer, visual artist and filmmaker, Amrei Aigner, passionate cineaste and employee at the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg, and Gregor Kliem, culture and music editor at the Sorbian programme of Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg (rbb), decided on the awards.

And these are the winners of the 20th Lausitz Film Show:

The main prize worth 1,500 EUR, donated by Hafenbüro Cottbus by APEX Projekt, went to GEDENKEN (Director: Anna Faroqhi, Haim Peretz, DE 2022). The short film is about former street children who, together with a social worker, an architect and a historian, plan a symbolic grave at the memorial site for a Nazi extermination camp in Jamlitz.   The three-member jury consisting of Annelie Tschemmer, visual artist and filmmaker from Cottbus, Amrei Aigner, passionate cineaste and staff member at the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg and Gregor Kliem, culture and music editor in the Sorbian programme of the Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg (rbb) explained their decision as follows: "The film convinces with clear images and language. By accompanying the protagonists in their need to come to terms with history, it creates a completely new perspective on a subject on which there are already many perspectives. In doing so, the topic of memory work is put in a new light in just a few minutes, especially in the current times of war."

The special prize of the Foundation for the Sorbian People, endowed with 1,000 EUR, was won by SE PADA (Director: Mira Dubian, Nima Schaper, DE 2022) The jury was convinced by the completely Sorbian film with historical texts through its expression of the young Sorbian generation between "it makes no sense to preserve the culture" and "but I do it - it makes sense, it has a meaning for the future!"

The audience award and with it a shopping voucher worth 250 EUR (donated by Spree Galerie - the City-Einkaufstreff in Cottbus) went to ... UND SCHONEDER FALLEN BOMBEN (Director: Miriam Bergmann, DE 2022). The film shows three little girls on the run. They are looking for a carefree childhood, but instead find a ticket to war.

Click through the anniversary edition of the Lausitzer FilmSchau again here:

The 32nd Cottbus FilmFestival was officially opened on Tuesday evening at the Cottbus State Theatre.


600 invited guests filled the Staatstheater Cottbus to capacity. Presenter and actress Monika Wojtyllo led through the evening. Singer Felix Räuber provided the musical accompaniment for the festive opening. The Ukrainian comedy LUXEMBOURG LUXEMBOURG by Antonio Lukich was shown that evening.

Click here again through the opening night of the 32nd FilmFestival Cottbus:

Festival Wednesday

The FilmFestival Cottbus (FFC) is one of the world's leading forums for Eastern European cinema. 119 films from 48 countries were screened at this year's film festival. Among them were 22 world premieres, 10 international premieres and 68 German premieres. Incidentally, connecting cottbus, one of the oldest and most successful co-production markets in Europe, is embedded in the festival. Coco is older than the Berlinale production market.

From 10 a.m. on this festival Wednesday, the first films can be seen. The blue line runs through the entire city, connecting the various venues. Tip: grab the festival magazine weeks before the festival, browse through the films and make a plan of which film you want to see where. Is the 5-ticket worth it then? Or even the festival pass? It's only available in advance, for 75 euros you can see five films every day (you can't get more) - make a note for 2023.

Kinoatmosphäre @Goethe

The day started with a WELCOME for our jury members. Here you can read about all the juries of the 32nd FFC again. Then there was the Work in Progress book presentation with film programme on the "History of the Sorbs in DEFA Film". The documentary THE LONELY LONG DISTANCE RUNNERS reported on the difficult working conditions of journalists in the East, followed by a film discussion at which protagonists of the film were also present. There was also a full hall in the Weltspiegel for the film THE LAST RACE; about a legendary ski race in the Giant Mountains in 1913.

The first prize of the festival was awarded on this Wednesday:The exsystent Filmverleih gets the "Cottbus into Cinema" - Award for FOOLS (Tomasz Wasilewski PL/DE, 2022). The prize is endowed with 10,000 euros and donated by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg. The prize facilitates the path to bringing the film to the cinema. Jakob Kijas from exsystent Filmverleih: "It takes money to get a film into the cinema, this prize makes it easier for us, we can finance the marketing, for example. Thank you very much that the medienboard and the FilmFestival Cottbus have chosen us as award winners."

In the evening there was the world premiere of the film KINGS OF RAP, browse through the gallery here:



Festival Thursday

From the new festival section ECOEAST, the film A TUNNEL was also shown on Festival Thursday. In the film, Nino Orjonikidze and Vano Arsenishvili show how the "New Silk Road" in Georgia is throwing a small sleepy town into turmoil. A major project not only for the environment, but also for local social coexistence. The section existed for the very first time this year and will be continued at the FFC in the coming years. Ecological issues and sustainability are also becoming increasingly important for the film world, which is why we are proud to have this section as a permanent part of our programme as of this year.

The film BRATAN BROTHER was shown in the Weltspiegel. The film from 1991 tells the story of a youth who wants to leave his village. His journey takes him by narrow-gauge railway through breathtaking landscapes. A Tajik film classic, which celebrated its German premiere at the FFC in the digitally remastered version.

Another highlight of the day was the ecumenical reception in the Oberkirche Cottbus. The film NO BODY AND THE BLUE SKY was shown here free of charge, followed by a discussion with the filmmaker. Every year, the Oberkirche becomes a very special cinema venue with free admission.

Cottbus filmmaker Ralf Schuster also presented his works from Super-8 to 35 mm on Thursday.

The so-called SLOW-TALKS, so called because they take place in the SLOW room in the Glad-House, delve thematically into the films shown. There is also an opportunity to ask questions. For example, filmmakers and experts were present for the Slow Talk ECO EAST.

Browse through the gallery of the Festival Thursday here:

Festival Friday

Friday was mainly dedicated to Ukraine. In this festival year, a total of 13 films from Ukraine and 3 films about Ukraine were represented in the programme of the FilmFestival Cottbus. Thus, the FFC presented at least one Ukrainian contribution in almost every section. Upon presentation of a valid Ukrainian passport, there is free admission to ALL films shown on the Friday of the festival.

The day began with a panel discussion on 3,187 days of war against Ukraine - how do filmmakers deal with it? Filmmakers become chroniclers of the war, but also participants in it. What can still be filmed, what budgets are available? This highly exciting event, at which there was much discussion, took place in cooperation with connecting cottbus. In the afternoon, there was another discussion at SLOW in the Glad House: The Ukrainian directors Taras Dron, Kristof Gerega and Kornii Hritsyuk were present.

Festivalfreitag Talk 3.187 Tage Krieg gegen die Ukraine 3@Goethe

A total of six films from or about Ukraine were shown on this Friday of the festival.

Many students went to see LARRY in the morning at the Kammerbühne. From stuttering shepherd to YouTube star, this story (directed by Szilárd Bernath) got under the skin.

The day was also marked by LIVE radio: from 5 to 6 p.m. rbbKultur broadcast from the Stadthalle. Andrea Handels and Carsten Beyer led through the programme, met exciting film guests and took a look behind the scenes of the festival. Then it was straight on at 7 pm: Radioeins Filmtalk with festival guests, film and festival makers. Moderated by Kino KingKnut Elstermann. There will be live broadcasts again next year. Come by our festival centre in the Stadthalle, make yourself comfortable and listen to exciting conversations.

Another extraordinary programme item was the 360° FullDome programme in the "Juri Gagarin" space flight planetarium (5, 7 and 9 pm).  The dome becomes a screen for abstract representations of technical processes and human emotional worlds. A unique cinema experience!

A highlight and always well attended is the LONG NIGHT OF SHORT FILMS at Weltspiegel Cottbus. Full auditorium, great films - for festival newcomers this event is a must. But if you've been once, you'll come again and again, so make sure you get your tickets in time.

Weltspiegel 3 (C)Goethe

The festive finale was in the evening: two bands and a DJ heated up the Scandale at the Bunten Bahnhof from 8 pm! Clear the stage for ACHT EIMER HÜHNERHERZEN, VIZEDIKTATOR and DJ KATE KAPUTTO.A big thank you to SCANDALE, our official festival club.

Browse through the gallery of the Festival Friday here:

Festival Saturday

On this Saturday, the focus is of course on the award ceremony in the evening. All the winners were discussed overnight, so our jury members did not have an easy task.

We had an international premiere in the afternoon in the Weltspiegel: ONE OF US, a Balkan neo-noir from Albania.  One of the main actors was Kasem Hoxha, a member of this year's International Festival Jury.

Team ONE OF US mit Bernd Buder 2 @Goethe

For all fans of the HOME/DOMOWNJA/DOMIZNA section, there was the LONG NIGHT OF SHORT LAUSITZERS. The best of the best from the Lusatian film scene met here. The latest work by Erik Schiesko and Sophie Riedel, REMIS, or THE EASTER RIDERS by Sophia Zisch, in which the question of why only men are allowed to carry out the tradition of Easter riding was discussed - great films from the region, so if you missed it, make a note for 2023.

In the evening, the festive award ceremony took place in the Cottbus Stadthalle. Christian Matthée hosted the evening.

Browse through the gallery of the Festival Saturday here, with all the award winners:To read about all the award winners, click here.

Festival Sunday

The last day of the festival traditionally starts with a fairytale film in the Stadthalle. This year ZITTERINCHEN was shown. The supporting film DIE BADEMEUSEL UND DIE GOLDENE SPINDEL was a world premiere about an adventure of the two little mice from Forst.

WIE KLINGT HEIMAT? was then the premiere of a documentary series about Lusatia by and with pop star Felix Räuber. The citizens' choir from Hoyerswerda was also a guest - what a surprise!

Director Axel Ranisch has been closely associated with the FFC for years, which is why he showed his new film ORPHEA IN LOVE here with us, of course.

Browse through the gallery of the Festival Sunday here:


We thank all supporters, partners, friends and sponsors.See you in Cottbus from 7 to 12 November 2023!

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