Berlin & Beyond Film Festival
Founded in 1996, the festival is a program of San Francisco's branch of the Goethe-Institut and has become one of the largest and most significant German-speaking film festivals outside of Europe. For 16 years, over 500 films have been presented with over 110,000 attendees. Notable guests have included Doris Dörrie, Bruno Ganz, Michael Verhoeven, Florian David Fitz, Wim Wenders and recently Mario Adorf. Annually, the festival welcomes over 10,000 people, and celebrates seasoned masters, up-and-coming new talents, dynamic new films and momentous classics.
Through 2009, the festival took place each January at the Castro Theater. In November 2009, it was announced that, starting in 2010, Berlin & Beyond would be moved to the fall to coincide with German Currents - a similar festival of the Goethe-Institut in Los Angeles. German Currents is a smaller festival, held at theaters in Los Angeles. The cooperation between the two festivals was prompted by the retirement of Ingrid Eggers, former festival director of Berlin & Beyond, who was instrumental in its founding. The cooperation was intended to allow the sister branches of the Goethe-Institut in Los Angeles and San Francisco to bring a larger and better selection of contemporary German-language films to the West Coast, and allow guest artists from Europe to make appearances at both festivals.
The festival’s current director is Sophoan Sorn, who was first appointed to lead the 15th edition, which took place in late October 2010 at the Castro Theater, along with an “Encore Day” in San Jose. The festival's 16th edition followed one year later, also with a day of films in San Jose. The recent 17th edition, which took place September 28 to October 4, 2012, was held at the Castro Theatre and the Goethe-Institut. At the 2012 Closing Night, it was announced that the festival's next edition would be in January 2014, reclaiming its former place on the Bay Area cultural calendar.
Honors and Tributes
Lifetime Achievement Award
Honoring a master of German cinema. Recent recipients include:
- Mario Adorf (Acting), 2012
- Wim Wenders (Directing), 2009
- Ulrich Mühe (Acting, Posthumous), 2008
- Michael Verhoeven (Directing), 2006
- Bruno Ganz (Acting), 2005
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