The Berlin Independent Film Festival runs at the same time as the Berlinale – Berlin International Film Festival’s European Film Market and claims to be “just down the street” from EFM, but is actually held at the Babylon Cinema near Rosa Luxemburg Platz, which is quite far removed from the EFM’s location at the Martin-Gropius-Bau near Potsdamer Platz.
The BIFF film submission address is in London since the festival directors are based both in London and Berlin. British actress and festival manager Claudine Biswas works in Berlin and the London office is run by James Devaux, who curates the festival. A team of freelancers support the festival and the jury consists of international winners from past festivals as well as active film professionals in London and Berlin.
The festival’s stated aim is to promote new filmmakers achieving major things with miniscule budgets, combining “a commitment to indie filmmaking ideals with a solid understanding of their potential in the marketplace.” It screens features, documentaries, shorts and music videos by German and international filmmakers.
The selection is a bit quirky, but it boasts some intriguing-sounding films, such as Christian Suhr’s “Descending with Angels,” which deals with Danish Muslims possessed by jinns, and Berton Pierce’s “Adventurados,” about two down-on-their-luck space shuttle pilots as they fly a last mission from the Moon to Earth before retiring.
For more information, visit http://www.berlinfest.com/
Article by Kirill Galetski