Home All News The first Georgian title to be presented at 'Books at Berlinale'

The first Georgian title to be presented at 'Books at Berlinale'

16 February, 2018

Good books are a valuable source of inspiration for film producers, which is the reason why books suited to film adaptation are presented at the International Film Festival in Berlin every year. This year, Dato Turashvili will be courting favour with film producers for his novel The Other Amsterdam (Sulakauri Publishing), the first Georgian title to be introduced at Books at Berlinale (19 February, 2018). The Frankfurter Buchmesse is organising the series in cooperation with the Berlinale. Frankfurter Buchmesse director Juergen Boos is pleased that Turashvili’s book at the Berlinale will also provide a foretaste of Georgia, this year’s guest of honour at the Frankfurter Buchmesse. Dato Turashvili was born in Tbilisi in 1966. He studied literature, film and art history in Tbilisi, London and Madrid. In addition to screenplays, he writes novels, short stories and plays. Turashvili’s book The Other Amsterdam revolves around the fate of Georgian immigrants to the Netherlands in World War II.

The jury selected a total of 12 titles for Books at Berlinale from amongst the original 150 submissions from 30 countries. They will be presented at 3.00 p.m. on 19 February in the banquet hall of Berlin’s parliamentary building. The Georgian National Book Center (GNBC) and the Frankfurter Buchmesse’s guest of honour, Georgia – Made by Characters, are extending an invitation to have coffee and network after the presentation. Medea Metreveli, Director of the Book Centre, views their presence in Berlin as an important programme element within the purview of the year as guest of honour. “Making films based on Georgian literature has a long and interesting tradition. The presentation of Dato Turashvili’s novel at the Berlin Film Festival’s platform Books at Berlinale represents a major opportunity for Georgian literature and a chance to attract the attention of the international film industry.”

Georgian films at the Berlinale
A full cinema line-up, ranging from a world premiere to classics

Georgia is also represented at the Berlinale by numerous films and an extensive programme. On 16 February, the world premiere of Horizon, directed by Tinantin Kajrishvili, will take place in the Berlinale’s ‘Panorama’ section. The Berlinale’s ‘Classics’ section provides viewers with newly restored film classics, which includes the 1958 Golden Palm of Cannes winner The Cranes are Flying, directed by Georgian director Mikheil Kalatozishvili (Michaeil Klatosow).

The growing importance of Georgian film is backed up by a number of awards. On 19 February, for example, Georgian actor Irakli Kvirikadze will receive the prestigious European Shooting Star Award as one of the ten most talented up-and-coming young European film actors. The prize is conferred by European Film Promotion (EFP), a network of European film organisations. The film My Happy Family, which has been nominated for the Lola Award by the German Film Academy, will be shown as part of a special ‘Lola at Berlinale’ retrospective. The audience will have the opportunity to meet the film crew following the screening.

Critics’ Week will also continue running during the Berlin International Film Festival, until 22 February. The event kicked off with the German premiere of Anna Urushadze’s Scary Mother, which has already won several international film festival awards. The Georgian film The Empty House by Rati Tsitlanadze and Nino Varsimashvili will also be screened as part of the ‘Talent Project Market’. The film was selected as one of 10 projects to be pitched.


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