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Berlin Fest fetes young filmmakers

Projects will be financed with up to $80K to compete

BERLIN — Filmmakers from the U.S., Lebanon and Switzerland were nominated Friday for the Berlin Today Award for young talent, which will be handed out during the Berlin Intl. Film Festival in February.

Fest topper Dieter Kosslick, local helmers Volker Schlondorff and Esther Gronenborn, Studio Berlin chief Doris Zander and Klaus Keil and Frank Stehling of regional subsidy Filmboard Berlin-Brandenburg announced the nominations, which were based on the filmmakers’ treatments for a short film about Berlin.

Grace Lee, from Los Angeles, impressed sponsors with “The Best of the Wurst,” about Berlin’s famed curry wurst stands. Myrna Maakaron offers a look at the similarities between her native Beirut and Berlin, while Swiss duo Stephanie Chuat and Veronique Reymond’s story follows a homeless man who finds shelter at the Berlin Philharmonic.

The projects will be financed with up to $80,000 and shoot this summer in Berlin, Beirut and Los Angeles; the winning entry is to be screened at next year’s Berlinale.

The winner of the Berlin Today Award will be chosen at next year’s Talent Campus, which was developed by Kosslick and launched earlier this year at the Berlinale as an educational platform for young international filmmakers.

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