Taking stock halfway: 55 years and still going strong

    HoF 2021: The team of WEIGHT L E S S

    On Sunday, 31. October 2021, the 55th Hof International Film festival came to a lively conclusion after an intense week of cinema. Actually, this is only the halfway point, because the film festival is still available as a streaming festival, plus7streamdays, on HoF on Demand until 7 November 2021.

    Attracting more than 650 professional visitors...

    ...HoF was the meeting point of the industry in this anniversary year and demonstrated the importance of communication and exchange among filmmakers. In addition to the 7 Minute Speed Pitch, the Late Night Talk Show - GASTHoF, the new format FrühstücksClub - the Breakfast Talk and the Club Talks, the master classes by media artist Asteris Kutulas and internationally successful director Abel Ferrara, which were integrated into the HoF PLUS program, were key highlights for mutual exchange.

    Current topics were in the forefront of industry discussions, such as in the live-streamed "Tacheles Talk - More Actresses over 50 in Feature Films, Streaming and Television" with actress-director-authors Adriana Altaras, Anke Sevenich and Anna Brüggemann, and Simone Wagner; the panel "Genre in Cinema" with Moritz Hemminger (The Playmaker Munich) and directors Alisa Kolosava and Manuel Weiß, as well as "How personal can a film be? Generations in cinema" with Julia von Heinz, Rosa von Praunheim and Lukas Röder. The meeting of the AG Film Festival and the 40th anniversary of the founding of Pandora Filmverleih were also part of the event, as was an invitation Issued by the FFF - FilmFernsehFonds Bayern.

    The world premiere of Asteris Kutula's LIQUID STAGING project ELECTRA '21 with the music of Mikis Theodorakis as well as Matthias Dietscherlein's Kinobus with screenings of short films in Hof's old town provided insights into the film world outside the cinema auditoria. There were some unique moments with our retro guest Joachim Król, who also kicked off the legendary soccer match between the filmmakers and the Hof team, and also with the series |8|16|35| - HoF Classics on analog film.

    The award ceremonies...

    ...provided the emotional highlights. These were the presentation of the Hans Vogt Film Prize to Asteris Kutulas, the New German Cinema Prize to Peter Meister for THE BLACK SQUARE as well as the Film Prize of the City of Hof to Julia von Heinz. The GRANIT-Hof Documentary Award went to LUCHADORAS by Paola Calvo and Patrick Jasmin with a 'Special Commendation' for Jens Meurer's SEASIDE SPECIAL, the Bild-Kunst-Förderpreis for 'Best Costume Design' to Hannah Ebenau and Sabrine Krämer and for 'Best Production Design' to Yvonne Leuze, both for TRÜMMERMÄDCHEN.

    The Hof Gold Award was presented in equal parts to Alisa Kolosova for CHARLY and Lukas Röder for BRAIN TATTOO. The Hof Jury Short Film Award was made for the first time, the winner being SORT OF GROWN UP by director Marlena Molitor. The Hof Critics Award 'Best Director' went to THE SAINT OF THE IMPOSSIBLE by MARC WILKIN and THE BLACK SQUARE for the production by Frisbeefilms.

    "55 years and still going strong. This major gathering of the film family was more than intense. So many person-to person conversations between watching films, eating bratwurst and playing soccer have not been held for a long time, that's for sure, and they were a real inspiration. How nice that this is only the halfway point and that the festival is continuing on HoF on Demand until 7 November."

    Thorsten Schaumann, artistic director

    We were thrilled to see the huge increase in professional visitors. And with about 10,000 cinema viewers in five days, the attendance under hygiene security measures (3Gplus, 50% cinema seats) can be seen as a great success.