Film und Medien Stiftung NRWNewsNewsSuccess in the cinema, strong series, gaming highlights and new industry events: The year in film and media in NRW during 2022

Success in the cinema, strong series, gaming highlights and new industry events: The year in film and media in NRW during 2022

  • Success in the cinema with "Rheingold", "Family Affairs" and "Rabbit Academy: Mission Eggpossible” 
  • Film shoots with stars Isabelle Huppert, Noomi Rapace, Oliver Masucci and
    Christoph Maria Herbst, and others.
  • Award-winning arthouse cinema with “Dear Thomas” and “Rabiye Kurnaz Vs. George W. Bush”
  • High-end series: "A Thin Line" and "Constellation", "Good Friends" and "Herrhausen – Lord of the Money”
  • New events: film trade show on the Piazza, International Distribution Summit, VideoDays Festival
  • 36 million for 406 projects, of which 20 million went to feature films and documentaries,
    8 million for 31 series 
  • 1.5 million for cinemas, 3 million for games, XR and web video, 500,000 Euros more for
    serious games
  • Strong start in 2023: 16 films and 5 awards in Berlin, 4 awards in Cannes and the Seriencamp in Cologne

Petra Müller, CEO of the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW: "2022 was another challenging year for the film and media industries that once more demonstrated their creativity and staying power. And with success because there’s rarely been such compelling and successful films, series and games being produced. Our thanks go first of all to the film and media professionals in NRW, whose works have thrilled cinema-goers, TV viewers, gamers, web video and radio play fans alike. And then we would like to thank our shareholders and funding partners whose commitment has made this lasting success possible in the first place. After a strong start in 2023 with  awards at the Berlinale and Cannes and a successful Seriencamp, we are now looking forward to the next six months!"

Funding in figures

The Film- und Medienstiftung supported a total of 406 films, series, games, cinemas, festivals, location projects and training programmes in 2022 with approximately 36 million Euros. Around 18 million Euros of this was invested in the funding of fiction and documentary feature films, around 8 million Euros for series and TV films, and 1.5 million Euros for distribution and world sales. The cinemas in NRW received 1.5 million Euros, including 1 million Euros for cinema programming prizes and a special award for Green Cinema was presented for the first time. Games and web video projects were supported with around 3 million Euros. Festivals and innovative location projects were funded with 1.1 million Euros, radio plays with 113,000 Euros. The NRW effect for production was around 300%. In addition, 1.8 million Euros from the new Creative Europe MEDIA Programme went to projects from North Rhine-Westphalia.

Box-office successes with comedies, animated films and documentaries

Fatih Akin’s biopic "Rheingold" (bombero international) topped the box-office charts for several weeks and attracted over 1 million admissions. This made the drama starring Emilio Sakraya in the role of rapper Xatar the most successful film supported by the Filmstiftung  in 2022, followed by Sönke Wortmann’s comedy sequel "Family Affairs" (Constantin Film) with Iris Berben, Christoph Maria Herbst and Florian David Fitz with around 800,000 admissions. The animated film "Rabbit Academy – Mission Eggpossible" (Akkord Film Produktion) by Ute von Münchow-Pohl was the most successful children’s film of the year with over 500,000 admissions. Released in 2021, "School of Magical Animals 1" (Kordes&Kordes) had topped 1.7 million admissions by the beginning of 2022 and was awarded the Lola for the most popular film of the previous year. "Femocracy" by Torsten Körner ( was the year’s most successful documentary film with 175,000 admissions. The homage to Pina Bausch "Dancing Pina" by Florian Heinzen-Ziob (polyphem Filmproduktion) and Regina Schilling’s artist portrait "Igor Levit. No Fear" (zero one film) both posted more than 30,000 admissions.

Award-winning arthouse: 16 German Film Awards for 12 funded films, 115 festival invitations and more than 100 prizes

Films backed by the Filmstiftung took home 16 of 22 possible Lolas at the 2022 German Film Awards . "Dear Thomas" (Zeitsprung Pictures) by Andreas Kleinert with Albrecht Schuch and Jella Haase was the evening’s big winner with 8 Lolas and the Film Award in Gold. The Lola in Silver went to "Rabiye Kurnaz vs George W. Bush" (Pandora Film Produktion) by Andreas Dresen and Laila Stieler with Meltem Kaptan in the title role. The documentary "Love, Deutschmarks and Death – Ask, Mark ve Ölüm" by Cem Kaya (filmfaust) won the Panorama Audience Award at the Berlinale and then became a festival favourite at more than  ten national and international festivals The Swiss-German co-production "A Piece Of Sky" by Michael Koch (Pandora Film) also had a stellar festival career, screening in the Berlinale Competition, Locarno and Karlovy Vary, among others. A total of 155 NRW-backed films were invited to national and international festivals and received over 100 awards.

Stars were shooting films and series throughout NRW

NRW was also a much sought-after shooting location for national and international (co-)productions in 2022. Margarethe von Trotta, who received the Lifetime Achievement Award of the European Film Academy for her work, shot the Berlinale competition film "Ingeborg Bachmann – Journey Into The Desert" (Heimatfilm) with Vicky Krieps and Ronald Zehrfeld, and Oskar Roehler (nachtlicht film) adapted his own novel "8 ¼" with Oliver Masucci in the starring role. In August, the Landschaftspark in Duisburg served as the location for the "Hunger Games" prequel by Francis Lawrence "The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes" with Rachel Zegler. Isabelle Huppert appeared for Jean-Paul Salomé in "The Sitting Duck" (Heimatfilm) which had its world premiere in Venice. “Shock" (Bon Voyage Films) was directed by Daniel Rakete Siegel and Denis Moschitto, making his directorial debut with this film and also starring alongside Fahri Yardim and Anke Engelke. Lutz Heineking jr. adapted the bestseller "The Peacock" (eitelsonnenschein) and had such audience favourites as Lavinia Wilson, Jürgen Vogel, Annette Frier, Tom Schilling, Serkan Kaya and David Kross in his ensemble of actors. The social media stars Lisa and Lena Mantler appeared in front of the camera for Lea Becker’s "Get Up" (Westside). Andreas Dresen shot "From Hilde, With Love" (Pandora Film) with Liv Lisa Fries as the resistance fighter Hilde Coppi.

8 million Euros for high-end series and TV films

In 2022, 3o series and TV films were supported with almost 8 million Euros for development and production. The Filmstiftung-backed series adaptation of Ferdinand von Schirach’s anthology "Strafe" (Moovie) was invited to screen in the Canneseries competition. The multi-nominated and award-winning high-end series "Die Wespe" (Gaumont) by Hermine Huntgeburth and the docu-series "Höllental" (Kundschafter Film) by Marie Wilke each received a nomination for the Grimme Awards. In June 2022, the Filmstiftung funded backed  production of the second season of the sadcom "Lu von Loser" (Alice Gruia Filmproduktion/ZDF) and the historical series "Haus Kummerveldt" (season 2, Outside the Club/WDR, ZDF, Arte) about female emancipation in the German Empire. Both series recently had successful premieres at the Seriencamp in Cologne. The Filmstiftung-backed series "Ich bin Dagobert" (Zeitsprung Pictures/RTL+) was presented at the European Series Day. The miniseries "Bonn" (H&V Entertainment) was shown at the Film Festival Cologne and will air on ARD in January 2023. "Faking Hitler" (UFA Fiction/RTL+) received the German Television Award. In addition, the fourth season of "Babylon Berlin" (X Filme Creative Pool/Sky, ARD Degeto) was broadcast and almost 4 million viewers watched the two-part event "Das weiße Haus am Rhein" (Zeitsprung Pictures) on ARD.

Sabrina Sarabi and Damian John Harper directed "A Thin Line" (Weydemann Bros.) with Saskia Rosendahl and Hanna Hilsdorf as twin sisters for the streamer Paramount+, which was launched in Germany in 2022. Noomi Rapace, Jonathan Banks and James D’Arcy were the leads in "Constellation" (Electric Eye/ Apple TV)  directed by Emmy winner Michelle MacLaren,  Oliver Hirschbiegel and Joseph Cedar. David Dietl directed "Good Friends" (UFA Fiction/RTL+) with Maximilian Brückner, Michael A. Grimm and Martin Brambach about the rise of FC Bayern München in the 70s. The directing duo Anca Miruna Lăzărescu and Jan-Eric Mack were in the director’s chair for "Davos" (Letterbox, ARD) with Dominique Devenport, Jeanette Hain and David Kross. Pia Strietmann directed the six-part series "Herrhausen – The Lord of Money" (Sperl Film + Fernsehproduktion, ARD) with Oliver Masucci and Julia Koschitz. Marc Rothemund also shot "Kidnapped – 14 Days Survival" (Construction Filmproduktion, RTL+) based on true events.

Grand total for cinema funding programme, 1.5 Million Euros for 74 Cinemas in 46 Cities and Special Award for Green Cinema

Last year, the Filmstiftung was able to provide around 1.5 million Euros for cinema modernisation, film presentations and cinema programming awards  74 NRW cinemas from 46 cities once more received the record sum of 1 million Euros at the Cinema Programming Awards in November. 40,000 Euros of this amount were offered this year for the Special Green Cinema Award to promote special initiatives for climate protection and sustainability in the cinema. The Cinema Programming Award’s  premium has included a basic amount of € 5,000 paid out equally to each of the award-winning cinemas since 2020 as a way of supporting the cinemas during the pandemic.

3 million Euros for games, web video and digital content and the award-winning role-playing game “Chained Echoes”

In 2022, a total of 39 projects were supported with 2.97 million Euros, and games such as "derpy conga", "Eville" or the multi-nominated indie hit "Hell Pie" being released. "Chained Echoes" by Mathias Linda recently caused a national and international sensation and was named Best Game at the German Computer Game Awards. At gamescom, NRW’s Media Minister Nathanael Liminski announced that from 2023 the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW will receive 3.5 million Euros (an additional 500,000 Euros) to give a boost to its successful games funding programme. This will be expanded to include a programme to back serious games. The beginning of September saw  Cologne serving as the meeting place for the creator community at the successful relaunch of the VideoDays Festival with more than 400 creators and 1,000 visitors. The third edition of the Creator College NRW was held in 2022 and hosted  numerous industry events. In addition, the Film- und Medienstiftung supported the Youlius Award and the Creator Day. The year ended with the games industry meeting at the German Developer Award in Cologne’s Flora.

4 million for young talent, 1.5 million for training and further education

The Film- und Medienstiftung provided more than 4 million Euros for  graduation films, debuts, up-and-coming projects and scholarships. ifsEuropean Showrunner Programme, a unique training and mentoring programme in Europe for aspiring showrunners, was launched with Netflix as industry partner and funding from the Film- und Medienstiftung and Creative Europe. There was also a successful launch for the first year of the Filmstiftung-backed master’s programme for"Entertainment Producing" which is also based at the ifs. The part-time "Masterclass Entertainment" embarked on its second edition with Amazon/Prime Video as the new industry partner.

Festivals, conferences and trade fairs are back, new events in NRW

In 2022, the motto of many festivals and events was "back to normal". This is how the Filmstiftung presented the TV and entertainment hub at MIPCOM in Cannes and travelled to the 50th International Emmys in New York with a prestigious delegation. The film industry came together at such events as the International Women’s Film Festival Dortmund|Cologne, Edimotion, Duisburg Film Week, Film Festival Cologne and Kinofest Lünen. The newly founded documentary departments of leading production companies introduced themselves at Doku-Tag NRW. But there were also numerous new events that met with a good response: the revamped Film Trade Show brought life to the Piazza in the Mediapark for the first time.

The successful industry platform EWIP – European Work in Progress was held for the fifth time and now included the new International Distribution Summit for the first time where strategies and concepts for innovative distribution were discussed; the creator community met at the premiere of the VideoDays Festival and presented the VideoDays Awards in the presence of Prime-Minister Wüst as a successor to the German Web Video Awards. And, last but not least, FilmSchauPlätze NRW welcomed over 7,000 cinema.goers to open-air cinema evenings at special locations throughout the region. 

Gender and diversity

Since 2015, the Film- und Medienstiftung has been keeping a record of the proportion of women receiving funding and all of the committees now have gender parity. In 2022, over 37% of the funded projects were by female directors and 17% were by female producers. In addition, it supports the International Women’s Film Festival Dortmund|Cologne, the mentoring programme "Into The Wild" and awards the sponsorship prize for young female developers in the games sector. The Filmstiftung subsidiary Mediengründerzentrum NRW organised the Sheroes programme for young female media founders for the first time. A diversity conference and a diversity training course are being planned for 2023.

Ecological standards, Keen to be green and sustainable power supply

On 1 January 2022, the Filmstiftung introduced a mandatory self-disclosure on ecologically sustainable production. "Keen to be green", an initiative of the regional film funds’ film commissions, was also continued. This year’s Berlinale saw an announcement of the standardisation of ecological standards for film funding on both a national and regional level. Special prizes for green cinema were presented for the first time at the 32nd Cinema Programme Awards in November 2022. In addition, the first certified Green Consultants are now working in NRW. In 2022, the Filmstiftung supported the "Filmybrid 30/60", the first sustainable power supply system that can be mass produced. Cologne-based company kemama developed a solution to be able to supply a shooting location with "mobile" electricity and thus also meet the ecological standards of the German film industry. 

Strong start to 2023: five awards at the Berlinale, four in Cannes, NRW premiere of the Seriencamp.

2022’s successful run has continued in 2023: five awards went to Filmstiftung-backed productions at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival: Thea Ehre received the Silver Bear for "Till the End of the Night" (Heimatfilm), the Encounters Award for Best Director and the Berlinale Documentary Award went to Tatiana Huezo and "The Echo" (Match Factory Productions), "Seven Winters in Tehran" by Steffi Niederzoll received the Perspektive and Peace Film Awards. "Fallen Leaves" by Aki Kaurismäki was awarded the Jury Prize at the 76th Festival de Cannes. In total, Filmstiftung-backed productions received four prizes: the Grand Prize in Semaine de la Critique for "Tiger Stripes" by Amanda Nell Eu, the Peace Prize for "Goodbye Julia" by Mohamed Kordofani and the FIPRESCI Prize for "The Settlers" by Felipe Gálvez. With the support of the Filmstiftung and industry partner Prime Video, the ifs internationale filmschule köln hosted the second edition of the "Masterclass Entertainment" as well as the European Showrunner Programme with industry partner Netflix. In June, the renowned  Seriencamp celebrated a successful premiere in NRW and put  Cologne on the map of the international series community.


Projects and funding amount in 2022 Number Euros
Films 175 20,550,490
Development and scholarships 47 1,012,000
Production 84 17,990,990
Distribution/World sales 44 1,547,500
Cinema 101 1,489,500
Series and TV projects 30 7,958,500
Development of serial formats 16 458,500
Production 14 7,500,000
Model project Film hybrid 30/60 1 125,000
Digital games and interactive content 39 2,972,000


Note: details of all funded projects with cast and crew can be found in the Annual Report.