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German drama Transitniki wins the Berlinale Co-Pro Series pitch


- BERLINALE 2020: The coming-of-age road trip beyond the Iron Curtain will also travel to the upcoming Séries Mania Co-Production Pitching Sessions

German drama Transitniki wins the Berlinale Co-Pro Series pitch
Director of the Berlinale Co-Production Market Martina Bleis (far left) with the winning team behind Transitniki (© EFM/Lydia Hesse)

The German drama series Transitniki has emerged as the winner of the Séries Mania Project Exchange Award at the exclusive Berlinale Co-Pro Series pitching event, which, as every year, is organised by the European Film Market’s Berlinale Co-Production Market. The project competed alongside nine others in front of a handpicked group of professionals, and will have the chance to be presented next month at the Séries Mania Co-Production Pitching Sessions (25-27 March), which are due to be held in Lille. As is customary, one project that was pitched at Séries Mania last year, and which in this case was Capturing Big Mouth, was invited to Berlin for the Co-Pro Series pitch as well.

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Produced by Karsten Stöter for Germany’s Rohfilm Factory (Heinrich Ambrosch), Transitniki is set in East Germany in 1985, when the country was still divided, as a group of young people decide to flee the country. In order to escape from the asphyxiating GDR, they set off to Eastern Europe to find freedom and illegally enter the Soviet Union. From there, they will embark upon a series of travels and adventures.

The coming-of-age road trip has been written by an experienced group of TV screenwriters: Heide Schwochow (Cracks in the Shell [+see also:
film profile
), Constantin Lieb (Eden – see the news) and Christian Mackrodt. According to the producer’s statement, there is not just one creator, and nor is there a single showrunner or a head writer. This means that everyone is on an equal footing in the writers’ room, which is composed of professionals from different backgrounds and generations, and of different genders, hailing from all over Germany. This thus enables a broader approach to the story.

The series is currently in development, and the team is still looking for more partners from different countries and regions. So far, they haven’t secured a broadcasting deal. It should also be noted that they have been selected to receive the MDM Film Fund’s development grant.

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