Each year the Filmförderung Hamburg-Schleswig-Holstein gives 18,000 euros to a new script that shows promise of being made into a film. The winner also receives “dramaturgical counsel” on perfecting the idea.
This year the five finalists (four women and one man) stood before an audience of about 250 people at the main Hamburg library, downtown at Hühnerposten 1. They each presented their ideas to an audience of a five-member jury, producers interested in new film possibilities, friends, and journalists.
The winner was Christin Schleuning from Hamburg with Das Boot ist Voll. She tells the story of a ship crew that rescues refugees in the Mediterranean Sea, but no country is willing to take them off their hands. The situation becomes so grave that the crew is ready to turn on the innocent passengers in order to get rid of them any way possible. Ms. Schleuning from Hamburg can write from experience as she has served as an officer in the German marines. She got a master’s degree at the Hamburg Media School. Naturally, the topic couldn’t have been more pertinent. It will be interesting to see whether the film actually ever gets made, and if there are refugees still around when it does. The winner from last year, Sabine Steyer-Violet, with Der Wunsch ist der Vater, still hasn’t even finished her year-old script, much less made plans to film it.
Most interesting about this event is its title: Butter bei die Stoffe. No clue what it meant, but the fact that grammatically correct would have been bei den Stoffen, aroused my curiosity. Friends told me that it comes from a German saying: Butter bei die Fische, which means to reach a conclusion, get things done, achieve something, finish it up and go forward. There is a German film from 2009 with this title.