Yes, it’s time again for the Berlinale, the Golden Bear, one of my favorite film festivals of the year, which up until now I have always watched from afar from my sleepy little Swiss home, dreaming of the big city full of film and fashion.
And while there are so many selections to feast your eyes on, I was over the moon to find out about the Teddy Awards, which runs as a part of the festival starting next week.
“The most outstanding queer film prize in the world”
So what’s going on at the Teddy’s? Don’t be embarrassed to admit you don’t know. Fresh off the boat in Berlin, I only found out recently myself, but check this out and tell me what’s not to like:
The Teddy Awards celebrate people and films that express queer themes and, in the words of their website: “contribute with this to more tolerance, acceptance, solidarity and equality in society.” The Berlinale official website likes to call it “the most outstanding queer film prize in the world”.
Films are picked out from all selections of the Berlin Film Festival ranging from retrospective to world premieres. An independent jury bestows awards in the categories of Best Feature, Best Documentary / Essay Film and Best Short Film, as well as a Special Teddy Award.
The theme of this year’s Teddy is Celebrate Queer Icons, a “celebration of gay men, lesbians, bisexual men and women, transvestites, closet queens and raging queers.”
The Schwuz Club is hosting a very special London Calling as the official Teddy Opening Party
The programme, which you can see in full here, runs from Thursday, February 5th to Sunday, February 15th.
On Friday night, the Schwuz Club is hosting a very special London Calling as the official Teddy Opening Party
The Awards Ceremony will be held at the Komische Oper Berlin 13th February at 9 pm. You can get tickets here but if you can’t make it, you can also watch it a few dazs later on ARTE or their website. The lineup for the ceremony promises to be a lot of fun, including a Special Teddy Award for Artistic Life Achievement for the one and only Udo Kier.
After the awards, it’s back to Schwuz for the official Closing Party.
So which films are you are you looking forward to? Who do you think will win the grand prize? Will we be seeing you at the Schwuz?
Noel Maurice is one of the founders of indieberlin. Originally from the UK via a childhood in Johannesburg, he has been resident in Berlin since 1991. Describing himself as a ‘recovering musician’, he is the author of The Berlin Diaires, a trilogy detailing the East Berlin art and squat scene of the early 90s, available on Amazon and through this site.