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FESTIVALS Germany

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Cottbus gears up for its 26th edition

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- The great German festival dedicated to Eastern European cinema begins a new quarter of a century with a rich programme, complemented by the Connecting Cottbus industry sidebar

Cottbus gears up for its 26th edition
Dogs by Bogdan Mirica

The FilmFestival Cottbus, an event created immediately after the reunification of Germany, which is today considered the world's most important gathering for Eastern European cinema, is all set for its 26th edition. From 8-13 November, the Eastern German city, located in a bilingual area of Brandenburg just a few miles away from the Polish border, expects to welcome some 20,000 visitors to watch 200 titles representing 45 countries.

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Twelve features (co-)produced by 18 countries, including five debut films, are in the running for the Lubina for Best Film. Among them we find titles that have already made a splash elsewhere, such as the Cannes-awarded Dogs [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Bogdan Mirica
film profile
]
by Bogdan Mirica (Romania/France/Bulgaria/Qatar), the tongue-in-cheek Houston, We Have a Problem! [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Žiga Virc
film profile
]
by Ziga Virc (Slovenia/Croatia/Germany/Qatar), about a Yugoslav space programme sold to Kennedy by Tito, All the Cities of the North [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Dane Komljen
film profile
]
by Dane Komljen (Serbia/Bosnia-Herzegovina/France), The Last Family [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Jan Matuszynski, which was recently hailed as the Best Polish Film at the Warsaw Screenings during the CentEast market, and two films that garnered praise this weekend at the Luxembourg-based CinEast festival: Kills on Wheels [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Attila Till (Hungary), about a group of wheelchair-bound hit men, and Planet Single [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Mitja Okorn, an ingenious Polish romantic comedy that won over audiences and critics alike in its home country.

The selection also includes Russian director Ivan I Tverdovsky, who is back with Zoology [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Ivan I Tverdovsky
film profile
]
two years after his triumph at Cottbus with Corrections Class [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Ivan I Tverdovsky
film profile
]
(crowned with three trophies, including the Best Film Award), as well as Slovenia's Damjan Kozole, a member of the Cottbus DIALOG jury three years ago, and taking part in the competition this year with Nightlife [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Damjan Kozole
film profile
]
. This edition also marks the return of Georgian director Rusudan Glurjidze with her feature debut, House of Others [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Rusudan Glurjidze
film profile
]
(Georgia/Spain/Croatia/Russia), which she presented at the project stage at the 2012 edition of the Connecting Cottbus (aka CoCo) market. Another CoCo alumnus is duking it out as well: Iglika Triffonova, with The Prosecutor, the Defender, the Father and His Son [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Iglika Triffonova
film profile
]
(Bulgaria/Netherlands/Sweden), the story of a war-crimes trial, based on real events.

The selection is rounded off by Anna's Life [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Nino Basilia
film profile
]
by Nino Basilia (Georgia) and It’s Not the Time of My Life [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Szabolcs Hajdu
film profile
]
by Szabolcs Hajdu (Hungary). The five-member jury, which includes Serbian actress Mirjana Karanović (recently acclaimed for her directorial debut, A Good Wife [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, which this month won the first edition of the free ArteKino pan-European online festival), will hand out the Lubina (worth €25,000) and special awards for Best Director, Best Actress and Best Actor. Meanwhile, ten short films hailing from nine countries will battle it out for two prizes.

For the industry professionals present, on 10 and 11 November, the 18th edition of CoCo will present ten projects selected from among 121 hopefuls: Berliner by Marian Crisan (produced in Romania by Anca Puiu's company, Mandragora), Hornet in a Bottle by Vit Zapletal (Czech Republic), Saf by Ali Vatansever (Turkey), Sister by Dina Duma (Macedonia), Strawberry Jam by Sasa Peric (Serbia/Denmark), The Heirs by Svetozar Golovlev (Germany/Poland), The Return by Krzysztof Rzaczynski (Poland), Voroshilovgrad by Yaroslav Lodygin (Ukraine/Switzerland), White Widows by Tanja Brzakovic (Germany) and With Rules by Dover Kosashvili (Israel).

(Translated from French)

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