Aug 192016

Directed by Nadja Zonsarowa (TV) & Maria von Heland (Stage)
Written by Maria von Heland


From the Guardian:

The role of the film industry in maintaining and improving connections between nations was a theme highlighted throughout the evening in what became a surprisingly politically-charged ceremony. The night’s host, German TV presenter and comedian Thomas Hermanns, defined freedom as “being connected to each other” and stated that “there is no art without inclusion”.

The EFA chairwoman, Oscar-nominated Polish director Agnieszka Holland, presented a selection of awards with president Wim Wenders and expressed her “deep concern about Europe” in an emotive speech.

“We must not forget that the films we make cannot be separated from the world that we live in,” she said. “I made several movies about the second world war, a time when Europe was riddled with hate and I don’t want it to return.”

Wenders went on to reminisce about the tyranny of the Berlin wall. “It seems like we’re going back in time and we can’t let this happen,” he said. “We must stand up and remember that nothing good has ever come from fear.”

Russian court jails Ukrainian film-maker for 20 years over terror offences.
Rush and Inglourious Basterds star Daniel Brühl came on stage to pay tribute to Oleg Sentsov, the Ukrainian film-maker imprisoned in Russia for “terror offences”, after a trial described by Amnesty International as “redolent of Stalinist-era show trials”. After reading out a powerful statement from Sentsov, Brühl said: “Oleg we will not forget you and we will keep on supporting you and your family.”

There were a number of attempts throughout the show to highlight the diversity of the European film industry and of Berlin itself with Hermanns speaking to various members of the audience about their multicultural background and, in one unlikely segment, dancing through the streets with Berliners of mixed heritage.

Roy Andersson , Winner: European Comedy
Carlos Areces, Presenter
Laura Birn, Presenter
Daniel Brühl, Presenter
Michael Caine, Winner: Best Actor & Honorary Award
Jesper Christensen, Presenter
Isabel Coixet, Presenter
Laia Costa, Nominee: Best Actress
Javier Cámara, Presenter
Stephen Daldry , Presenter
Grigoriy Dobrygin, Presenter
Sasson Gabai , Presenter
Jakub Gierszal, Presenter
Sturla Brandth Grøvlen, Film Patron: Victoria
Martin Gschlacht, Winner: European Cinematographer Prix Carlo di Palma
Johan Heldenbergh , Presenter
Thomas Hermanns, Host
Agnieszka Holland, Presenter
Sebi Jaeger,  Dancer
Asif Kapadia, Winner: European Documentary
Reda Kateb, Presenter
Peter Keglevic, Presenter
Burghart Klaußner, Musician
Johannes Kuhnke, Presenter
Yorgos Lanthimos, Winner: European Screenwriter
Ulrich Matthes, Presenter
Andrea Occhipinti , Winner: European Co-Production Award – Prix Eurimages
François Ozon, Presenter
Pawel Pawlikowski, Presenter
Charlotte Rampling, Winner: Best Actress & Lifetime Achievement Award
Elisa Sednaoui,Presenter
Alexander Skarsgård, Presenter: European Achievement in World Cinema
Paolo Sorrentino, Winner: European Director & European Film
Carice van Houten, Presenter
Christoph Waltz, Winner: European Achievement in World Cinema
Wim Wenders ,  Presenter
Jürgen Biesinger,  executive producer
Marion Döring, producer
Kriton Klingler-Ioannides, Music

‘Youth’ Takes Top Prizes at European Film Awards 2015: Complete Winners List

by Ed Meza for VARIETY
Paolo Sorrentino’s “Youth” took three top awards at the 28th European Film Awards in Berlin on Saturday, winning best European film, director and actor for Michael Caine.

The drama, which premiered in Cannes and was the evening’s favorite, centers on a retired orchestra conductor (Caine) contemplating the indignities of growing old during his stay at a posh Swiss resort with his old friend (Harvey Keitel). It was Sorrentino’s second major win at the European Film Awards. His drama “The Great Beauty” swept the awards in 2013, winning five awards, including picture, director and actor.

Accepting his award, Caine quipped,“In 50 years I’ve never won an award in Europe and tonight I’ve won two.”

Caine also became only the third recipient of the Honorary Award of the European Film Academy President and Board, which the Academy previously bestowed on founding member Manoel de Oliveira and Michel Piccoli.

Charlotte Rampling took the actress prize for Andrew Haigh’s drama “45 Years,” about a married couple about to celebrate their 45th anniversary when they are suddenly shaken by a letter that arrives for the husband. Rampling was also honored with the European Film Academy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Roy Andersson’s quirky and episodic Golden Lion-winning “A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence,” the final part of a trilogy on the human condition, was named best comedy.

Asif Kapadia’s “Amy,” an intimate look at late singer Amy Winehouse,” won the documentary award, while Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthimis Filippou took the screenplay prize for “The Lobster,” the darkly comic fantasy starring Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz.

Tomm Moore’s “Song of the Sea,” about a young Irish boy and his little sister who can turn into a seal, picked up the animated feature film award.

The People’s Choice Award went to Alberto Rodriguez’s 1980-set Spanish crime drama “Marshland.”

Christoph Waltz picked up the European Achievement in World Cinema for his international contribution to film.
Italian producer and distributor Andrea Occhipinti of Rome-based Lucky Red was awarded the Prix Eurimages.

The ceremony took time midway through the show to call attention to the plight of Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov. Speaking on behalf of the European Film Academy, German actor Daniel Bruhl offered support for the filmmaker, who is serving a 20-year sentence in Russia for his opposition to Russia’s annexation of Crimea. The Academy has asked Nikita Mikhalkov, president of Russia’s association of filmmakers, to join in the international protest and help the Ukrainian filmmaker.

Some 900 guests attended the awards ceremony at Berlin’s Haus der Berliner Festspiele, most of whom headed over to the glitzy aftershow party at the nearby Sofitel Berlin Kurfurstendamm.

The full list of winners and nominees follows.

Best European Film
“The Lobster”
“A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence”
“Youth” — Winner

Best European Actress
Margherita Buy, “Mia Madre”
Laia Costa, “Victoria”
Charlotte Rampling, “45 Years” — Winner
Alicia Vikander, “Ex Machina”
Rachel Weisz, “Youth”

Best European Actor
Michael Caine, “Youth” — Winner
Tom Courtenay, “45 Years”
Colin Farrell, “The Lobster”
Christian Friedel, “13 Minutes”
Vincent Lindon, “The Measure of a Man”

Best European Director
Malgorzata Szumowska, “Body”
Yorgos Lanthimos, “The Lobster”
Nanni Moretti, “Mia Madre”
Roy Andersson, “A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflection on Existence”
Sebastian Schipper, “Victoria”
Paolo Sorrentino, “Youth” — Winner

People’s Choice Award 2015

Best European Comedy
“The Belier Family”
“The Brand New Testament”
“A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence” — Winner

Best European Documentary
“Amy” — Winner
“Dancing with Maria”
“The Look of Silence”
“A Syrian Love Story”
“Toto and His Sisters”

European Achievement in World Cinema (Honorary Award)
Christoph Waltz

Fipresci Prize – Best European Discovery
“Goodnight Mommy”
“Mustang” — Winner
“Slow West”
“Summers Downstairs”

Best European Animated Feature
“Shaun the Sheep Movie”
“Song of the Sea” — Winner

Honorary Award of the EFA President and Board
Michael Caine

Best European Short
“Field Study”
“Kung Fury”
“Our Body”
“Picnic” — Winner
“The Runner”
“Smile, and the World Will Smile Back”
“Son of the Wolf”
“Symbolic Threats”
“This Place We Call Our Home”
“The Translator”

Best European Screenwriter
Radu Jude and Florin Lazarescu, “Aferim!”
Alex Garland, “Ex Machina”
Andrew Haigh, “45 Years”
Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthymis Filippou, “The Lobster” — Winner
Roy Andersson, “A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflection on Existence”
Paolo Sorrentino, “Youth”

TECHNICAL WINNERS (previously announced)

Best European Cinematographer
Martin Gschlacht, “Goodnight Mommy”

Best European Editor
Jacek Drosio, “Body”

Best European Composer
Cat’s Eyes, “The Duke of Burgundy”

Best European Production Designer
Sylvie Olive, “The Brand New Testament”

Best European Costume Designer
Sarah Blenkinsop, “The Lobster”

Best European Sound Designer
Vasco Pimentel and Miguel Martins, “Arabian Nights”


Share this:

 Comments Off on EUROPEAN FILM AWARDS 2015
Feb 022014

Premiering in Emden Filmfestival. Airing on May 30th on ARD, Germany’s channel 1.

Directed by: Maria von Heland
Produced by: Nataly Kudiabor
Moritz Anton
Production Design: Astrid Pöschke
Costume Design: Andreas Janczyk
Make Up Artists: Heiko Schmidt, Kerstin Gecklein
Editor: Uta Schmidt
Casting Director: Mai Seck
Screenplay by: Sathyan Ramesh

Principal Cast:
Jeanette Hain
Devid Striesow
Anna Maria Mühe
Barry Atsma
Christine Ostermayer
Eisi Gulp
Bernd Stegemann
Michael König

Share this:



 Current Projects, Uncategorized  Comments Off on REAL MEN DON’T DANCE
Jan 062014
 Posted by at 14:16
Jan 202012

Presentation pdf


A Chinese/German co-production.

Written and Directed by Maria von Heland

Produced by Oliver Damian 27Films

Camera Roman Osin


An epic interracial love story that starts in the frozen city of Harbin in the early 1920s and flourishes in Shanghai in the 1930s – a stormy time in history where freedom, war, creative expression and death danced hand in hand in an exotic blend that easily could be mistaken for happiness. Mr Lu (inspired by the Russian Legend Oleg Lundstrem) is a blues pioneer and Wei Daiyun a wild-spirited dancer – what they share is a passion so hot, that neither their parents’ wishes, their governments’ commands nor as it turns out the passage of time can cool it. When the two meet again, after over 50 years of separation their faces have altered – but not the expression in their eyes. Life is short. The dream of true love lasts forever.


Currently in script development funded by Medienboard Berlin Brandenburg.


The journey towards making a film in China has been a very stimulating one so far. Oliver Damian and I were invited to the Shanghai International Film Festival in 2010 for a Pitch and Catch session and used the journey to find partners in China. We learned a lot at met many people we like to work with. Among them Shanghai-based producer Natacha Devillers of Les Petits Lumières, veteran set designer Yu Baiyang, line producer Er Yong.

I went for another pitching session in Utrecht 2010. The big learning experience thus far was that this is a film everyone wants to see, but that is going to be hard to make. In other words we need to have a lot of patience and a lot of passion. Luckily both Oliver and I have both.

Oliver has made several trips to Asia in order to place the project on the market, and get an idea for how to structure the financing.

The support of Medienboard Berlin Brandenburg enabled me to make a second journey to China in October 2011. It was an intense 4 weeks of visiting studios, meeting actors, talking with distributors, going on location tours and learning more about the industry in China. Thank you Sisi Wu (producer) of Les Petits Lumières for your crash course on Chinese Cinema and Yu Baiyang for the extensive location tour. I came back full of ideas for the new script, and currently the ball is in my court. With the new understanding of China, of the Chinese market a new draft is evolving.



Share this:

 Comments Off on MR LU’S BLUES
Jan 181999

England! (2001) poster


Director: Achim von Borries

Achim von Borries, Karin Aström, Maria von Heland

Ivan Shvedoff, Merab Ninidze and Anna Geislerová


Valeri Sikorski knows from his doctors that his days are numbered because of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. He wants to make a last adventure in his life and goes to England, but first he stops in Berlin to pick up his best friend Victor. But Victor has disappeared. Now Valeri’s journey turns into a search for his old friend Victor.

Adolf Grimme Awards, Germany 2003

Brussels European Film Festival 2001
Best Actor: Ivan Shvedoff

Cottbus Film Festival of Young East European Cinema 2000
Audience Award Achim von Borries
Award of the Ecumenical Jury Achim von Borries
Don Quixote Award Achim von Borries
Promotional Award Achim von Borries

Festróia – Tróia International Film Festival, 2001
Tróia Award – First Works Section Achim von Borries

German Film Critics Association Awards
2002 Won German Film Critics Award
Best Cinematography
Jutta Pohlmann
Best Screenplay (Bestes Drehbuch)
Achim von Borries
Karin Aström
Maria von Heland

Max Ophüls Festival
Year Result Award 2001
Nominated Max Ophüls Award Achim von Borries

Prix Europa 2001
Prix Europa

Trieste Film Festival, 2001
Prize Trieste Achim von Borries

Share this:

 Comments Off on ENGLAND!