The Berlin Film Festival has confirmed that its in-person ?Summer Special? will go ahead as planned as an exclusively outdoor event.
The decision comes just under a month after organizers revealed that staging the event in cinemas and outdoors was proving to be a ?bigger challenge? than anticipated given worrying COVID-19 figures out of Germany. The fest said it would make a final decision in May, and in a refreshing turn of events, it?s good news for the international film industry.
Organizers said the event will run from June 9-20, albeit without the planned indoor screenings. ?The Berlinale is pleased to be able to give audiences the enjoyment of an open-air cinema experience at 16 venues in total at the Summer Special,? reads a statement.
Organizers cited Berlin?s falling 7-day incidence for COVID-19, as well as ?positive signals? by government officials to support the request for a pilot project with mandatory testing as reasons for the June confab going ahead.
Berlin confirmed in December that it would take place ?in two stages? in 2021 ? first with a virtual European Film Market in early March, and then as a summer event with film screenings for public audiences.
The festival program will be on offer to Berlin audiences across the city at a total of 16 venues, including a specially created outdoor cinema at the historic Museum Island Berlin as the main venue. The ?Kiez-Kino? local cinema screenings will also take place as outdoor events.
The open-air venues include: Freiluftkino Museumsinsel, Freiluftkino Friedrichshain, Freiluftkino Rehberge, Freiluftkino Kreuzberg, Freiluftkino Hasenheide, ARTE Sommerkino Kulturforum, ARTE Sommerkino Schloss Charlottenburg, Open Air Kino HKW, silent green, Atelier Gardens Freiluftkino @ BUFA, Freilichtb?hne Wei?ensee, Freiluftkino Biesdorfer Parkb?hne, Freiluftkino Friedrichshagen, Freiluftkino Pompeji, Freiluftkino vom Filmrauschpalast and Frischluftkino@Studentendorf.
Organizers said the fest is now working ?at full speed? to put measures in place for the outdoor festival. The Summer Special will open on June 9 at the main venue at Museum Island Berlin, while a June 13 awards ceremony will honor the films selected by official juries in March.
The program will be unveiled on May 20, while ticket sales will begin May 27.
?reprinted from Daily Variety.