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Filmförderung: Invitation to Brunch
by Birgit Schrumpf

They all came. More than 600 guests showed up. It is already a tradition that the Hamburg Senate invites the film industry for an opulent buffet brunch during the Berlin Film Festival. For the last seven years the FFHSH has joined as co-host. Manager Eva Hubert welcomed the guests with a short speech. She was happy to announce that in total twelve of the sponsored films (e.g., Schlafkrankheit/Sleeping Sickness; Wer wenn nicht wir/Who If Not Us; Utopia Ltd) are screened at the Berlinale which is a good average for northern Germany.

It was exciting to see quite a few actresses and actors “in the flesh” whom one knows from films and TV productions, like the lovely actress Maria Bäumer (Sometime in August) fooling around with director Detlev Buck (Same Same but Different) in front of the photographers. I saw Sonja Kirchberger and Armin Rohde (film and TV actors) in concentrated discussion. Between two phone calls, his mobile still in hand, actor Peter Lohmeyer (Das Wunder von Bern) tried fishing for a cocktail tomato. Whilst moving around holding my plate with the most delicious little cakes for desert, I noticed more film personalities, e.g., Richy Müller (TV actor, Tatort), Nina Petri (actress, Emmas Glück) Hermine Huntgeburt (director, The White Massai), Monika Treut (director, Ghosted) and others. I also chatted with our friend, documentary filmmaker Susan Chales de Beaulieu who was in Berlin as a member of the film industry (Fachbesucher). Ms Kohlstedde and Mr Wiederspiel, organizers of the Hamburg Filmfest, also mingled with the guests.

The Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein GmbH (FFHSH) provides support for low- and high-budget feature films and TV productions of exceptional quality. The subsidies include support for screenplays, production, distribution and world sales as well as for presentations at festivals. Furthermore, the FFHSH is an important contact point for producers, scriptwriters, directors, distributors and exhibitors. Last year 155 film projects were sponsored for a total of 14.5 million Euro.