This year marked my first time attending the Berlinale. Having never been to Berlin before, and knowing the importance of the Festival, I was very excited for the trip. Every Festival is a very distinct experience, and Berlinale is no exception. The industry presence is overwhelmingly international, even more so than Cannes, largely because of the proximity to Sundance (Berlin starts about 2 weeks after). While I did not attend many official screenings, based on the scarcity of tickets, the market in Berlin seemed second only to Cannes in terms of the amount of screenings and quality of screenings, which was fantastic, as I prefer market screenings due to the lack of lines and ease of access. Overall, I was able to check out between 5-6 screenings a day throughout the Berlinale, while still spending a bit of time checking out the city (despite the frigid temperatures). There were still plenty of films that were high on my list which I missed, a product of more films in the market than time on the schedule. Like the other top premiere Festivals and markets, the Berlinale definitely requires us to have multiple programmers working several days to properly cover all the films. Luckily, with Mike and Dilcia there for the run of the Festival, we had a very productive trip. Expect to see several of the Berlin premieres in our Festival this October.
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