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Generation Kplus Section Opening Night
by Rose Finlay

It was a joyous occasion on February 2nd as the Generation Kplus section celebrated its opening at the Urania Kino in Berlin Tiergarten. Generation is the section of children’s films at the Berlinale, and specifically the Kplus program is for children under the age of 14. At the opening, the new section head Sebastian Markt and section manager Melika Gothe addressed a cinema packed with children, adults, and film professionals about their vision for the section this year. They were accompanied on-stage by German sign language interpreters, part of the Berlinale’s growing attempts to provide more accessible and inclusive opportunities for audiences. Films in this section often have German overdubbing, but this year there were some with German or English subtitles along with sign language interpreters for post-film discussions sessions. Also, for select screenings Ukrainian and Arabic overdubbing were also available. We were introduced to the Children’s Jury, who decide the winner of the Crystal Bears for Best Film and Best Short Film. Finally, long-time section head Maryanne Redpath, who left the position in 2022, officially opened the section as the guest of honor. The Belgian film ZEEVONK was the powerful opening film that followed the ceremony and judging by the reactions of the other attendees, it was truly a successful opening night!