Film und Medien Stiftung NRWNewsPressOpen call for third Baumi Script Development Award

Open call for third Baumi Script Development Award


  • Development grant for outstanding international cinematic stories
  • Applications until 15 October to
  • This year’s guest juror is the actress Martina Gedeck

Düsseldorf / Cologne, 15.09.2017. This Friday sees the launch of the open call for the Baumi Script Development Award for the development of outstanding cinematic stories. As from today, German and international writers can submit applications to for the € 20,000 grant.

Initiated in 2015 by Martina and Sandra Baumgartner, Pandora Film and the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, the Award aims to facilitate free and independent script development and, at the same time, honour the memory of the film producer and distributor Karl ¨Baumi¨ Baumgartner and pay tribute to his special sense for stories and high-quality arthouse cinema.

The condition for participation is that one should have had at least one screenplay filmed, and it is obligatory for newcomer screenwriters to submit their applications along with a production company. A treatment must be submitted in English. The Award consists of a prize sculpture, a certificate and the prize-money. The prize-money is for the specific purpose of script development. The Award is presented during the 2018 Berlinale.

A jury with three ¨permanent¨ members – Martina Baumgartner, Reinhard Brundig (Pandora Film) and Petra Müller (Film- und Medienstiftung NRW) – and one annually alternating guest juror – chooses the winner from among the applications. This year will see the actress  Martina Gedeck serving as the guest juror. Martina Gedeck received the German Film Award for her performance in „Bella Martha“ which Karl Baumgartner produced with his company Pandora Film.  „Whenever you were together with Baumi, you would have the feeling that there wasn’t anything nicer and more worthwhile than making films. This inner pleasure in his profession – which was a vocation for him – left a deep impression on me", says Martina Gedeck. The directors Fatih Akin (2015) and Aki Kaurismäki (2016) were the guest jurors in the previous years.

The winner of the first Baumi Award in 2016 was the Egyptian filmmaker Omar El Zohairy with „Feathers of a Father". El Zohairy was subsequently invited to work on the further development of his project at the Cinéfondation’s Residence Programme of the Festival de Cannes, the Torino Film Lab, and at the Sundance Writers Lab. The film is currently in the final stages of financing. It was already backed by the Hubert Bals Fund and CNC – aide aux cinémas du monde, the producers are New Century (Egypt) and Still Moving (France). Principal photography in Egypt is planned for spring 2018.

The winner of the second Baumi Award was the Polish filmmaker Kuba Czekaj with the treatment  „SORRY POLAND". Last May saw him receiving the 2017 Krzysztof Kieslowski ScripTeast Award at the 70th Cannes Film Festival. Czekaj is currently working on the final draft of the screenplay.

The Award’s founders would like to extend special thanks to Friederike Zeit for the design and the making of the prize sculpture, Katja Clos for the graphics including the logo, and to Fritz Erler for the programming of the website.