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First awards

Hamburg Producer Award 2021

9 October 2021


At the festive award ceremony on 8 October 2021 at the Besenbinderhof, the three Hamburg Producer Awards were presented by Hamburg’s Senator for Culture Dr. Carsten Brosda. The award, which has been in existence since 2014, recognises the special achievements of German producers and film and television production companies. It is awarded in the competition categories “International Cinema Co-Production”, “German TV Production” and “German Cinema Production” with prize money of 25,000 euros each. For the first time this year, a special prize of 5,000 euros was also awarded for serial formats.



The prize in the category “German Cinema Production” was won by producer Jonas Weydemann (Weydemann Bros.) for the film No One’ s With the Calves (director & screenplay: Sabrina Sarabi). The three jury members – producer Martina Haubrich, director and dramaturge Julian Pörksen and director and writer Arman T.Riahi – praised the production as both an “idiosyncratic and unsparing film. Director Sabrina Sarabi and leading actress Saskia Rosendahl operate here in an almost frightening symbiosis, which one almost wants to follow into the abyss without resistance despite all adversities.”


A total of six films from the “Große Freiheit” section were nominated for the Hamburg Producer Award “German Cinema Production”. The prize money is provided by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.


The Hamburg Producer Award “International Cinema Co-Production” went to German producer Melanie Andernach (Made in Germany Filmproduktion) for the international co-production with France, Belgium, Germany and Chad Lingui (director & screenplay: Mahamat-Saleh Haroun). The decision was justified “with convincing performances in all trades, from camera, editing, costume, sound design and production design.” Furthermore, the film shows a “world in which solidarity among women brings movement forward, encouraging us viewers that even in situations that seem hopeless, old coats can be thrown off and new paths to a better future can be taken.” In addition, the Hamburg-based post-production company Optical Art will provide a cinema grading worth 15,000 euros for the foreign co-producer of the winning film. This will go to the French company pilifilms, based in Paris.


Film editor Andrew Bird, Iranian cinematographer and producer Mohammad Reza Jahanpanah and agent Marie Luise Schmidt also awarded an honourable mention for the international co-production The Stranger (director: Ameer Fakher Eldin, German co-producer: Dorothe Beinemeier, Red Balloon Film). A total of twelve films were nominated across all sections for the Hamburg Producer Award “International Cinema Co-Productions”. The prize money is provided by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.


The winner of the Hamburg Producer Award “German TV Production” is producer Jürgen Schuster (Fandango Film) for the TV film Sleepless in Portugal (director: Florian Froschmayer, screenplay: Saythan Ramesh). The jury consisting of producer Lisa Blumenberg, actress Luise Wolfram and director Max Zähle explained their decision as follows: “The film in Florian Froschmayer’s precise staging explores the broad field of love in a surprising, profound and life-smart way. It is also extremely entertaining thanks to the brilliant, quick-witted dialogues and the constantly surprising screenplay by Sathyan Ramesh.” The prize money for this award of 25,000 euros is donated by the Verwertungsgesellschaft der Film- und Fernsehproduzenten (VFF), which also provides the prize money of 5,000 euros for the Special Prize for Serial Formats, awarded for the first time this year. The special prize was awarded to the producers Ulf Israel and Reik Möller for the production Waiting for the bus (director: Fabian Möhrke, screenplay: Sophie Decker, Oliver Bukowski). “The series comes across so purely, as if you were watching people humanising themselves through a burning glass. We don’t just watch, we think, feel, argue with them and want to know more and more about the characters and their worries and dreams. You want to keep watching – an absolute must for a serial format.”


Eight films and four series from the “Television” section were nominated for the Hamburg Producer Award for German TV Productions. The prize money in has been provided by the VFF – Verwertungsgesellschaft der Film- und Fernsehproduzenten since 2014.


“With the Hamburg Producer Award, the city recognises the courage, the willingness to take risks and the outstanding achievements of the producer landscape,” said Hamburg’s Senator for Culture Dr. Carsten Brosda, who presented the Hamburg Producer Award on the evening of the Explorer Conference.


Festival director Albert Wiederspiel warmly congratulates the award winners: “After a year’s break, we are delighted about the many strong competition films from Germany and all over the world, including the award-winning film Lingui from Chad, a country that rarely appears on the cinematic map and whose visual language convinced the jury”.


This year, the Douglas Sirk Award goes to the director Leos Carax. The award ceremony with the German premiere of his film Annette took place on 2.10.2021 at CinemaxX 1 Dammtor.


The 30th FILMFEST HAMBURG will take place from 29 September to 8 October 2022.

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