2. Day: TEDDY PARTY – Let’s go wild

The TEDDY is normally not a shy deer, but still you don’t see it very often in its natural environment since it sleeps and rests on almost 354 days of the year. While other bears return to their caves for hibernation, the TEDDY becomes more active, its sleep more shallow, its dreams more vivid. It slowly begins to wake up, which can take between 3 and 4 months. But then it is wide awake in an instant moment, rushes to the international stars in the German capital, which – as it secretly knows – come only to see the roaring TEDDY, it is to be found on every party and at the end he is traditionally the host of the “Best Party of the Berlinale” as which experts state the grand TEDDY GALA. But this year this are different, because this year the TEDDY surprises everyone with not only one, but two big parties. And the first one is tonight’s grand opening Party at SchwuZ, where we will also welcome this year’s international TEDDY Jury!

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So, see you on the dancefloor!

Sebastian

P.S.: But please take good care of yourselves, because SchwuZ moved to Neukölln and we all know what’ going on down there…

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P.P.S.: For everyone who wants to stand in the flashlights of the Berlinale glamour before taking a bath in the party crowd, we can also today recommend a variety of fascinating movies which compete for one of the wanted TEDDY AWARDS:


BIM, BAM, BOM, LAS LUCHAS MORENAS
(Bim, Bam, Bom, las luchas morenas)

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Three women/three sisters/three professional luchadoras, part of the Dynasty Moreno: Rossy, Esther and Cynthia are competitive wrestlers on the ring. But they also bring lucha libre into life, wrestling with knives, pig heads, flowers and feathers!

Arsenal 1, 2.30pm


YVES SAINT LAURENT
(Yves Saint Laurent)

At the age of 21 talented young designer Yves Saint Laurent takes up a position as assistant to couturier Christian Dior. After Dior’s death Saint Laurent is made artistic director of one of the world’s most renowned fashion houses. His first collection is a triumphant success and this shy fashion genius becomes famous overnight. In Pierre Bergé he finds the love of his life and together they found their own label: ‘Yves Saint Laurent’.
Jalil Lespert creates a monument to one of the most creative proponents the world of fashion has ever known. Saint Laurent’s innovative creations revolutionised haute couture and are still regarded as the epitome of French lifestyle.

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Zoopalast, 6.00pm


LOVE IS STRANGE
(Love is Strange)

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When same-sex marriage is legalised in New York in 2011, Ben and George decide to marry after 39 years together. Shortly after this, George, who works as a music teacher at a Catholic school, is dismissed without notice and they lose their apartment in Chelsea. George finds a place to stay with a gay couple and Ben is taken in by his nephew’s family in Brooklyn.
Impressively director Ira Sachs and his ensemble turn a story about loss of livelihood in the wake of homophobia into a sensitive study of partnerships. Alfred Molina and John Lithgow embody the deep bond between George and Ben with a touchingly tender light-heartedness, giving us a couple which enchants each other and us with their love.

Zoo Palast, 9.00 pm


CARAVAGGIO
(Caravaggio)

On his deathbed, the painter Michelangelo Caravaggio (1571–1610) looks back on his life. In flashbacks we see his Milan, the man who fostered his talent, and above all, his relationships with his models. Caravaggio finds the models for his mainly religious paintings among outsiders. On his forays into the world of the poor, criminals, and drunkards, he meets the gambler Ranuccio and his lover, the prostitute Lena. The passionate love triangle comes to an abrupt end when the body of a pregnant Lena is pulled from the Tiber.
Derek Jarman charts the (fictional) portrait of an artist lived between debauchery and social protest, transferring Caravaggio’s art with an artistic verve of his own onto the screen.

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Haus der Berliner Festspiele, 9.30pm


CASTANHA
(Castanha)

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52-year-old actor and transvestite João has his best years behind him. He’s ill, has lost both lovers and companions along the way and appears weary, even if none of this stops him from living the way he always has. João shares two rooms with his mother in a housing complex closed off to the outside; at night he performs in small theatres and gay bars.
The film makes just as much time for solitary moments in shabby backstage areas as it does for João’s performances and his unforgettable face, exploring a milieu at once tender, brutal and cruel with precision, its fleeting glamour only skin-deep. Its complex layers of documentary observation and fictional elements coalesce into a story of life and death.

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Cinemaxx 4, 10.00pm


THE DOG
(The Dog)

The_Dog_1Over ten years in the making, Allison Berg’s and Frank Keraudren’s powerful documentary THE DOG follows the life of John Wojtowicz, who spectacularly attempted to secure the money for his partner’s sex change by robbing a bank in Brooklyn in 1972. His attempted heist was made famous by Sidney The_Dog_2Lumet’s 1975 film DOG DAY AFTERNOON. Making use of copious archive footage, photographs and testimonials from contemporaries, the filmmakers follow not only Wojtowicz’s occasionally bizarre life and progression from lower-middle class right-winger The Dog_3to militant gay activist, but also provide an unconventional survey of gay culture in New York during the past forty years. The Dog is truly a labour of love with Wojtowicz as its fascinating anti-hero, captured here in all his humaneness.

Cinestar 7, 10.30pm


YA GAN BI HAENG
(Night Flight)

Yong-ju bumps into his ex-best friend, Gi-woong. They are in the same class but have long since gone their separate ways. Gi-woong’s gang is notorious for their cruel bullying of an eccentric classmate named Gi-taek. His attempts to regain their old friendship mean Yong-ju also runs the risk of becoming a target of this terrorising clan, but he refuses to give in. Instead, Yong-ju cleverly draws Gi-woong into a power game of mutual humiliation and burgeoning memories which triggers a dangerous emotional duel. The director of last year’s Panorama film WHITE NIGHT has chosen anonymous and abandoned urban spaces in which to depict the emotional turmoil gripping the two schoolboys.

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Cinemaxx 7, 10.30pm


TEST
(Test)

It’s 1985. The location is San Francisco, America’s ‘gay mecca’. Introverted Frankie is an understudy in a prestigious modern dance company. Todd, an established dancer in the troupe, is openly homosexual. When one of the dancers falls ill one day, Frankie is asked to stand in and Todd helps him prepare. Could the illness be the ‘gay plague’ as they are already vilifying AIDS? Ignorance, repression, panic, fear, prejudice and open homophobia are rife. The friendship between these two very different men deepens in these new circumstances.
Chris Mason Johnson’s richly atmospheric film is reminiscent of the first great films of the time depicting the challenges faced by the community.

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Cinestar 3, 10.45pm


Meet the Jury: Lucia Kajankova

Name: Lucia Kajankova
Country: Czech Republic
Festival: Mezipatra

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How do you like Berlin? What is special about the city for you?
I adore Berlin and have been visiting the city quite regularly since I was 16. For me, it’s a sister-city to my home at Prague (and quite close to get there quickly) – but kinkier, more dynamic and mixed in what is there to experience expecially in the indie & queer scene, just the perfect place to be weird and enjoy that.

How would you describe the Berlinale in one sentence?
Where cinephiles, industry, emerging filmmakers, stars, friends and “wait-till-you-hear-about-my-new-project”-attention-hunters gather for ten days on an immensely fun and exhausting 10-day freezing hunt for films, caffeine and the one thing to remember after we all go home.

What was your first encounter with the TEDDY AWARD?
It was the same year I started programming and first visited Berlinale. Pretty much my whole schedule was quickly based on the TEDDY selection. Jake Yuzna’s Open, one of my favourite ground-breaking queer films won the Jury Special Mention.

In your eyes, what does the TEDDY AWARD symbolize? What does it stand for? What makes it unique?
It symbolizes the merge of grand film festivals (such as Berlinale itself, Cannes, Venice, Sundance and so) and the distinctive place of specialized queer / lgbt film festivals – as a communication space between the two worlds as well as an appreciation for the role queer / lgbt films and filmmakers have (and should have) in the main spotlight. And this was a long battle, of which TEDDY AWARD is one the important pioneers.

Tell us about a movie you’ve recently seen.
Wolf of Wall Street – pure orgy of what is the power of cinematic storytelling while rejecting the appeal to moralize that is often asked of artists. I tremendously enjoyed the film.

Meet the Jury: Julián David Correa

Name: Julián David Correa
Country: Colombia
Festival: Ciclo Rosa
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How do you like Berlin? What is special about the city for you?
I love Berlin. While growing up in Medellin, Colombia, and thought in Europe, I always imagine the whole continent like Berlin: A City protagonist of the western history, in which all cultures lives. I can imagine Döblin walking with Brecht, and both finding Wenders and Fassbinder in the middle of a noisy cabaret of the 20s.

How would you describe the Berlinale in one sentence?
The best film festival in the world, a summary of the diversity of cinema.

What was your first encounter with the TEDDY AWARD?
I began to find the name TEDDY AWARD when I selected films for Ciclo Rosa, and always saw the TEDDY AWARD linked with works and people I respect: Barbara Hammer and Julián Hernandez, among others.

In your eyes, what does the TEDDY AWARD symbolize? What does it stand for? What makes it unique?
I love a sentence by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea (director of “Fresa y chocolate”) about his film: “The theme of the story, and now the film is not homosexuality. The subject embraces much more: Friendship and intolerance […] Learning about differences, admit that world is full of very diverse and complex people”. The TEDDY AWARD and the arts are a way to discover the richness of our diversity.

Meet the Jury: Andrew Murphy

Name: Andrew Murphy
Country: Canada
Festival: Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival
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 How do you like Berlin? What is special about the city for you?
I absolutely love this city and I hope to one day get back in summer (not during a festival) to really further explore all Berlin has to offer! My first international festival travel was to the Berlinale back in 2002. Hard to believe 14 years have past! I have developed many life long friendships and professional relationships here in Berlin. For those reasons alone, this city is very special to me. Not to mention the delightful thrift shops near Alexanderplatz…

How would you describe the Berlinale in one sentence?
A city that insists you pay attention to it, yet fronts it doesn’t care what you do.

What was your first encounter with the TEDDY AWARD?
I reckon I’ve been attending the TEDDY party for as many years as I’ve been coming to Berlinale and so the TEDDY AWARD, the party, its significance to Berlinale and to LGBT cinema worldwide, have all lent itself to my growth and development as a gay man.
To talk film specifically, I’m not sure if I’ve been more affected in a long time after seeing the Polish film last year, In the Name Of… It went on to win a TEDDY and my colleague Scott Ferguson, Executive Director at Inside Out and I knew after drying our eyes in cinema, this had to open our festival last year. And it did. It was a bold choice for Toronto, but I feel as one who grew up Catholic and gay, this film would both provide powerful story telling alongside key learnings and challenging our audience in relation to Queer cinema growing up.

In your eyes, what does the TEDDY AWARD symbolize? What does it stand for? What makes it unique?
Wieland [Speck] has done the LGBT arts community worldwide a great service by creating the TEDDY. No other A-list ‘mainstream festival’ has something so unique and representative of LGBTQ issues and stories. Yes, the cinematic world’s attention is on Berlin every February, but the TEDDY ensures that our stories about our community – our struggles, our celebrations, our varied realities – are all represented. Everyone gets screen time at Berlinale in context of the TEDDY and for that I can only be grateful for being exposed, and to have an opportunity to be entertained and educated every February – to take with me the rest of the year.

Tell us about a movie you’ve recently seen.
Finally caught The Broken Circle Breakdown. Combines my love for music and strong storytelling. This film is devastating in so many ways, but the way the songs were chosen to forward the narrative and with an extraordinary lead, it’s no wonder it’s on the road to Oscar!

1. Day: TEDDY liftings

The lights turn off, the curtains are opened and on the white screen we see the panorama of the world. And then, all of a sudden, everything is different. The TEDDY has changed during its summer sleep in the last year. It got himself a new fur and moved officially into this blog as its second home, its second cave. Here it is looking forward to coming in contact with those, who are especially important to it: You. The readers, users, reporters and fans. Therefore we ardently invite all of you to check out this webpage blog, to click, to read and for sure also to comment!

And for all those of you who asked themselves what happened to screen, which a moment ago still was white, can here and now – like usual – get all the news about the Berlinale films which are competing for a TEDDY AWARD. Because today the festival opens its doors and the beginning makes…no one. On the first day the TEDDY will still rest a bit and prepare for the Grand Opening Party which will take place tomorrow at SchwuZ. Until then we recommend you to inform yourself about this year’s programme and everyone who has not a ticket yet for the grand TEDDY Gala on the 14th of February at the Komische Oper Berlin should buy them immediately otherwise there will be none left.


If you don’t have a clue yet what to wear for the grand opening party at Schwuz tomorrow, you might want to check out some old Disney movies.  After all J.Law did it, too:

jennifer lawrence golden globes dress meme1 Jennifer Lawrences Dior Dress at Golden Globes Inspires Meme

 

jennifer lawrence golden globes dress meme Jennifer Lawrences Dior Dress at Golden Globes Inspires Meme

 

This dress was brought to you by Snow White Design.

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