In 2020, Berlinale Talents is going collective: the six-day summit (February 22 to 27) looks at proven and experimental community models in four creative fields: “Cinema”, “Film Set”, “Company” and “Society”. Collectives from the film, art and theatre worlds will come to Berlin for the nearly 100 talks, workshops and networking events, including ruangrupa, the Indonesian collective recently entrusted with the artistic direction of documenta fifteen.

“By exploring the ‘collective’, Berlinale Talents responds to a clear desire within the film scene to find new forms of collaboration beyond established hierarchies. It will be exciting to experience how such a different understanding can harness creative potential,” says Mariette Rissenbeek, Executive Director of the Berlin International Film Festival.

The trend is in numbers: directors bundle creative forces for their films, authors compile their screenplays in the writers’ room, the crowd provides funding, and good old film clubs alongside the newest technologies enable open discourse with a diverse public, with everyone on equal footing. Collectives are uniquely poised to question the systems behind it all: How is creativity possible in dialogue? How do we split things fairly, including payment? How can we find a sustainable balance between self-determination and the interests of others?  And how can we put our ‘power of the many’ to good use? In “Collective Gatherings”, “Kitchen Table Talks” and other interactive workshop and discussion formats, Berlinale Talents also breaks from its own hierarchical structures to maintain a critical eye on itself and provide fertile ground for new commons.

Berlinale Talents has entered into a co-partnership with MasterCard that will help expand its network for sustainable talent development. At the core of their cooperation is the jointly created Talents Footprints – MasterCard Enablement Programme, which, for the first time, specifically supports Talents and alumni to implement their film-related social initiatives. With a view on alumni throughout the globe, the Berlinale Talents managers, Christine Tröstrum and Florian Weghorn, are enthusiastic: “There is enormous potential for change in the international Talents community. We are excited to have MasterCard at our side as a partner that recognises the social significance of film culture and supports the commitment of Talents from the ground up.”

Jessica Claar, Vice President, Marketing Communications Germany & Switzerland from MasterCard, calls on everyone to participate: “For us, filmmakers are motors for change, not just by what they bring to the screen, but also for their ideas on how to create a fairer world in which to live and work. With our programme, we hope to encourage and support you in leaving behind your footprint.”

Whether it’s for a female cinematographers network, an indigenous screenwriting workshop, an LGBTIQ+ festival or innovations for a more eco-friendly film production: the ways in which Berlinale Talents participants commit themselves in their home countries are highly diverse. Talents Footprints is aimed at young creatives with initiatives in one of the four core areas “Gender Equality and Diversity”, “Quality Education and Work”, “Peace, Justice and Understanding”, and “Environmental Awareness and Climate Action”.

From December 13, 2019 until January 10, 2020, the 500 participants of Berlinale Talents 2019 and 2020 may apply. In the first year, MasterCard supports three filmmakers and their social projects with financing as well as mentoring and coaching tailored to their needs. The goal is to build a solid foundation for the initiatives to achieve long-term success and the widest possible impact.

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