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Berlin Film Festival to Honor Wim Wenders with Honorary Golden Bear

LONDON — The 65th Berlin Intl. Film Festival is to fete German filmmaker Wim Wenders with an homage and present him with an honorary Golden Bear for lifetime achievement.

Ten Wenders films will be shown as part of the homage, including “Wings of Desire,” which will play on Feb. 12 at the Berlinale Palast.

“In dedicating the homage to Wim Wenders, we honor one of the most noted contemporary auteurs. His cross-genre and multifaceted work as a filmmaker, photographer and author has shaped our living memory of cinema, and continues to inspire other filmmakers,” said Dieter Kosslick, director of the Berlinale.

Wenders is described by the festival as one of cinema’s great innovators. Since his feature debut in 1970, “Summer in the City,” Wenders has made around 50 films.

In the 1970s, Wenders was part of a young generation of filmmakers who heavily influenced New German Cinema. Working against the backdrop of the economic and artistic crisis in commercial film of that time, they developed new aesthetic forms and ventured into independent production and distribution.

Following his international breakthrough with the early road movies “Alice in the Cities” (1973) and “Kings of the Road” (1976), he has worked in Europe, the U.S., Latin America and Asia, and has received numerous awards at festivals around the globe, including the Palme d’Or for “Paris, Texas” (1984) and the award for best director for “Wings of Desire” (1987) in Cannes, the Golden Lion for “The State of Things” (1982) in Venice, and the Silver Bear for “The Million Dollar Hotel” (2000) in Berlin. Wenders presented his 3D project “Pina” at the Berlinale in 2011, and the film picked up an Academy Award nomination.

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“What’s impressive about Wim Wenders is the diversity of his artistic affinities — his work not only as a filmmaker, but also as an author and a photographer. He has honored artists he admires in numerous cinematic essays, such as Yasujiro Ozu in “Tokyo-Ga” in 1985, or most recently, the photographer Sebastiao Salgado in “The Salt of the Earth” in 2014,” said Rainer Rother, director of Retrospective/Homage and artistic director of the Deutsche Kinemathek.

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