German director recounts saga of rebellion

German director recounts saga of rebellion

The sixth Bengaluru International Film Festival (Biffes) on Saturday featured one of the greats from German cinema, Heins George Badewits.

Badewits told a gathering on Saturday at a panel discussion that he had kicked off his career almost 47 years back and did so as a rebel.

A man who makes films critical of government’s inadequacies and mistakes, he said he was  marginalised in the State-sponsored film festivals in Germany. “But that spurred me on to launch my own festival and to this day, it is successful and people encourage me for my effort.”

Badewits born in Hauf, a small town in Bavaria, did his film research in Munich.
He said when he made one of his earlier films critical of the German government’s policies, the film was rejected in the government-backed festival.

“Precisely at this time, I joined hands with eminent people like Kurt Rosenthall, Vlado Schmidt, Reiner Warner and launched my own film festival, the Haufer Festival.
“In the inaugural edition, nine short films were exhibited, and the festival, known as perhaps the smallest film festival in the world, now holds a reputation for being on the major stops in the film festival circuit.”

Badewits says time was when Hollywood films were seen in the morning and German films were screened in the evening. Talking about the impact of Hollywood on German films, the director said the old culture of both film worlds exisiting should continue in Germany. He believes the trend to disown one’s own cinema is becoming more frequent than ever before.

Film festival authorties have meanwhile said that this time an open-ground exhibition could not be undertaken as it was too cold and that last time, the response was not good even though Rs 20 lakh had been spent to set up a film screen at Freedom Park.

But Karnataka Film Academy’s former president and actor Tara has said that response was very good last year at Freedom Park and it was important to take film festivals to the people.

She has also said only Rs one lakh had been spent on the screening arrangements.

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