FilmFestival Cottbus and Connecting Cottbus at the Berlinale

    First prize for 20th festival edition

    The "Distribution support prize for a festival film From Cottbus to Cinema" is being awarded to the

    distributor Alpha Medienkontor. The Weimar-based distributor will receive the prize today on occasion of

    the East European Brunch of FilmFestival Cottbus and Connecing Cottbus. The prize sponsored by

    Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg GmbH as well as Film und Video Untertitelung Gerhard Lehmann AG

    Potsdam-Babelsberg is endowed with 13.500 Euros and meant to support the theatrical release of the

    feature film THE RAINBOWMAKER (Germany Russia Netherlands Finland 2008) by Georgian director Nana

    Djordjadze. On Feb. 25th, 2010 it will be released in theatres in Germany. Djordjadzes fairytale story

    about a weather forecaster who uses supernatural powers to fight for the love of his family was screened

    as closing film at the 19th FilmFestival Cottbus.

    Bernhard Sallmann´s Science-Fiction documentary DREAMS OF THE LAUSITZ (Germany 2009) receives the

    Promotion Prize of the DEFA Foundation. In their laudation the DEFA Foundation substantiates the

    choice as follows: "The film also refers to the DEFA picture The pains of the Lausitz by Peter Rocha. It

    provides a recent portrait of a landscape, its inhabitants and the changes it went through. Especially the

    powerful imagery conveys an idea of the atmosphere in the region. Sallmann´s vision of the changes in

    an industry landscape gives courage, even though there still is a long way to go." The film deals with the

    aftermaths of opencast mining in the Lausitz region. At the 19th FilmFestival Cottbus, with an audience

    largely coming from the region described in the film, DREAMS OF THE LAUSITZ met very interested visitors.

    Being the first winner of the 20th FilmFestival Cottbus, Russian film student Anastasia Posnova is being

    awarded the Promotion Prize of the GWFF. "With Anastasia Posnova, who was born the same year the

    Berlin Wall came down, the festival is promoting a very promising talent", festival director Roland Rust

    says. "She studies film production at the renowned Moscow film school VGIK and will use this scholarship

    to further her education in an institute abroad." The prize is endowed with 4.500 Euro.

    The East-West co-production market Connecting Cottbus will give the Special Pitch Award to young

    director Vladimir Perisic from Serbia. Persisic´s disturbing war drama ORDINARY PEOPLE won among

    others the Main Prize for Best Film in Cottbus 2009. The Special Pitch Award enables Perisic to pitch his

    newest project at the upcoming Connecting Cottbus pitch.

    All winners are present to receive their awards in person. Before the East European Brunch, a meeting of

    the sponsorship association "Friends of the German-Russian Film Academy" takes place in Berlin.

    Festival team contact at the Berlinale

    Jörg Ackermann, Organizer: 11.-21.2.2010

    Roland Rust, Festival Direktor: 11.-21.2.2010

    Andreas Stein, Festival Manager: 11.-21.2.2010

    Cornelia Kästner, Press Officer: mobile phone: + 49 163 84 74 937

    Karin Fritzsche, Curator "Retrospektive": 11.-21.2.2010