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Schlondorff, Kosslick may co-top Berlin fest

De Hadeln gets walking papers

BERLIN — Speculation about the future leadership of the Berlin Intl. Film Festival took a new turn Thursday with rumors that director Volcker Schlondorff is being considered as a second head.

He would join flamboyant industry personality Dieter Kosslick, who is the apparent front-runner to replace the current executive director, Moritz De Hadeln, by 2002.

Separately, German daily Tagespiegel has reported that De Hadeln had already been dismissed — while he was still on holiday. However, a meeting apparently took place Thursday in Berlin between De Hadeln and fest organizers, but the outcome of that colloquy is still unclear.

Neither fest reps nor a Berlin city spokesman would talk about De Hadeln’s contract or the rumored reshuffle. De Hadeln’s contract was due to be re-negotiated for a maximum three-year extension by the end of April.

While Kosslick’s reps dismissed the rumors out of hand during the festival in February, they are now declining to comment, adding substance to the report.

Kosslick is a major personality in the German film industry, running the film subsidy board, Filmstiftung NRW. He is well known beyond German borders as a member of the European Film Academy. Schlondorff, whose credits include “The Tin Drum,” headed the Babelsberg Film Studios outside Berlin for several years in the mid 90’s but went back to fulltime film directing last year.

(Derek Elley in London contributed to this report.)

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