Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Berlinale 2010: First Competition Titles Announced

The Berlin Film Festival has just announced the first seven (out of twenty-six) films to be screened in the festival's main section, although only six of them will compete for the Grand Prix, or Golden Bear, named after the symbol of the City of Berlin.

It seems, that to celebrate the fest's 60th anniversary, the festival director Dieter Kosslick and his team took great pains to assemble a maximum number of high profile titles by some of the world's most celebrated directors including Roman Polanski and Martin Scorsese. While it had been rumoured that Polanski's film, the Ghost, would premier at the fest - after all, the film was shot in and around Berlin - it was doubtful given the director's recent arrest in Switzerland, that post-production would be completed in time for the festival opening.

It is the second world premiere for Martin Scorsese to be held at the Berlin Film Festival after the much hyped and talked about screening of his Rolling Stones documentary, Shine a Light, two years ago. However, like his previous Berlinale main section entry, Shutter Island, too, will be screened out of competition.

The main section/ competition line-up so far:

Bal (Honey) Turkey / Germany
by Semih Kaplanoglu (Süt/Milk, Yumurta/Egg, Melegin Düsüsü/Angel’s Fall)
with Bora Altas, Erdal Besikcioglu, Tülin Özen, Alev Ucarer, Ayse Altay
World premiere

Der Räuber (The Robber) Austria / Germany
by Benjamin Heisenberg (Sleeper, Max-Ophuels-Preis 2006)
with Andreas Lust, Franziska Weisz
World premiere

My Name Is Khan India
by Karan Johar
with Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol
Out of competition

Na Putu (On the Path) Bosnia and Herzegovina / Austria / Germany / Croatia
by Jasmila Zbanic (Grbavica, Golden Bear 2006)
with Zrinka Cvitesic (Shooting Star 2010), Leon Lucev, Ermin Bravo, Mirjana Karanovic
World premiere

Shekarchi (The Hunter) Germany / Iran
by Rafi Pitts (Zemestan - It's Winter)
with Rafi Pitts, Mitra Hajjar, Ali Nicksaulat, Hassan Ghalenoi
World premiere

Shutter Island USA
by Martin Scorsese (The Departed, Aviator, Cape Fear)
with Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Sir Ben Kingsley, Michelle Williams, Patricia Clarkson, Max von Sydow
World premiere / Out of competition

The Ghost Writer France / Germany / UK
by Roman Polanski (The Pianist, Oscar 2002, China Town, Cul-de-sac, Golden Bear 1966)
with Ewan McGregor, Pierce Brosnan, Kim Cattrall, Olivia Williams
World premiere