Film und Medien Stiftung NRWNewsPress6th Annual Presentation of the Wim Wenders Grant in Düsseldorf

6th Annual Presentation of the Wim Wenders Grant in Düsseldorf

Today, the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW and the Wim Wenders Stiftung presented the winners of the Wim Wenders Grant for the sixth time in a row at Filmwerkstatt Düsseldorf. The grant, which is annually endowed with a total of 100,000 Euros, supports young filmmakers in their efforts to explore new creative means for innovative visual storytelling, allowing them to develop their film projects independently.

The jury chaired by Wim Wenders selected four projects from a total of 36 entries. Apart from the quality of the projects’ content, the originality of their visual conception was the most important for the jury. Alongside to chairman Wim Wenders, the jury also includedPetra Müller, CEO of Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, and Mirko Derpmann, creative director of Scholz & Friends.

Jury chairman Wim Wenders: "This year, the number of strong project entries was greater than ever. It shows that our grant is increasingly reaching its 'target group' and also how much we are catering for a real need. That has not made the jury’s work any easier, on the contrary. But we are sure that this sixth year will again see us being able to support particularly courageous and unconventional film projects in their development. We congratulate this year’s grant holders and are looking forward to seeing the progress of their predecessors at tomorrow’s colloquium."

"This year’s projects were particularly exciting because they feature an amazing variety of storylines and formats. An experimental documentary, an Instagram series, a 360-degree documentary and a stalking thriller in the GoPro perspective… The four selected projects develop a very individual cinematic vision for their respective storyline, freeing themselves from any common formula. Congratulations to this year’s grant holders, my thanks also go to my fellow jury members Mirko Derpmann and especially to Wim Wenders. It is a great pleasure and honour to be working with him", said Petra Müller, CEO of Film- und Medienstiftung NRW.

The selected projects for 2019:

"Bitter wie das Leben, stark wie die Liebe und sanft wie der Tod" by Eli Roland Sachs, hybrid of feature film and documentary, 36,000 Euros
An African man with a gunshot wound to his chest drifts through Germany. He hardly speaks, but he meets people during his journey, who entrust him with stories unlike anything the world has heard before. These stories are based on real interviews with witnesses of atrocities from the conflict zone in northern Nigeria. The poetic docudrama describes the indescribable.

"Mauern" by Henning Beckhoff, stalking thriller in the GoPro perspective, 24,000 Euros
Local politician Anna Maibach (32) has been exposed to hate mail and attacks ever since she decided to run for the office of mayor in Wuppertal. Her life changes abruptly when an apparent stranger suddenly starts following her.

„Was Mach(t) Mut?“ by Jan Raiber, documentary film in 360°3D, 24,000 Euros
An experiment, an unpredictable adventure: a feature documentary about the Muslim family the director has married into. A research project about film language in 360°3D. Questioning the world at every turn. A confrontation therapy for Islamophobes.

"0816" by Lumi Lausas, web series for Instagram and IGTV, 16,000 Euros
The web series for Instagram and IGTV is about young people who spend their summer holidays in their home village in Sweden. The short episodes are each told from the perspective of one of the characters, with the aesthetics and characters creating both an authentic and sensitive view of what it means to be young as well as touching on sexuality, depression and relationships.

A colloquium has been held annually since 2016 for the current grant holders and those from previous years following the grant presentation ceremony. They are invited the next day to report to the jury about the current state of their funded projects, show early samples of their work and support one another in the further development of their projects and through discussions with the jury.

The Wim Wenders Grant of the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW was awarded for the first time in 2014. Since then, 25 grants have been awarded with total funding of around 600,000 Euros. The jury consisting of Wim Wenders (chair), Filmstiftung CEO Petra Müller and Mirko Derpmann (Scholz & Friends) decide on the allocation of the grants in a two-stage application process. After an initial pre-selection, the candidates are invited to present their projects to the jury. The emphasis lies on the convincing formal and visual realization of the projects and on thematic criteria.

The Wim Wenders Stiftung was founded in Düsseldorf in 2012 on the initiative of Wim and Donata Wenders, with the generous support of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, the City of Düsseldorf, the Cultural Foundation of the German Federal States as well as private donors and the networking and advice of Petra Müller, CEO of Film- und Medienstiftung NRW. The Wim Wenders Stiftung promotes the preservation and presentation of the cinematic, photographic, artistic and literary works of Wim Wenders and is in dialogue with national and international cultural and academic institutions as well as research and education. Based in the filmmaker’s hometown, the foundation also pursues various aspects of support for the up-and-coming generation in the area of innovative storytelling, in particular through the Wim Wenders Grant of the Film-und Medienstiftung NRW.