Character- / Creature Designer
Sebastian Lochmann was born on the 15.04.1977 in Eisenach. After working as an illustrator at the faculty of sciences in Erlangen he moved on to working as a freelance sculptor for H.R. Giger in Zurich and Gruyère in 1999. Since 2003 he is working as a character and creature designer/sculptor for films. Sebastian has created numerous character designs, sculptures and make-ups for films such as Biutiful, The Impossible, Clash of the Titans 2 and The Dark Knight Rises.
Author, Director and Editor
Martin Menzel was born in 1979 in Magdeburg. Following his training at the German television channel ZDF, he spent a year in New York, studying Filmmaking at the New York Film Academy. His short films such as Fahrerflucht, Wall Street Chicken and Vanishing were shown at festivals around the world. His newest project as an editor Among Men – Gay in East Germany was screened at the Berlinale 2012 in the Panorama section. Martin is also a member of the Bundesverband Filmschnitt (BFS), which represents the interests of freelance editors.
Nora Tschirner is one of the most versatile and enthralling german actresses of her generation. Born in Berlin in 1981, she began acting in school. In 2003 she played her first leading part in a cinema production alongside Matthias Schweighöfer in the cult film Soloalbum. In the same year, she made her stage debut in Trainspotting at the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg. Since then Nora Tschirner has been seen in numerous successful cinema productions such as Rabbits Without Ears, The Crocodiles and Offroad. In 2009 Nora Tschirner and Florian Lukas starred in of one of the best trailers that sehsüchte has had.
Producer and Director
In 1978 Axel Engstfeld founded his own production company and concentrated on the development and production of high quality documentaries and documentary series for national and international audiences. Next to a multitude of TV-documentaries Axel Engstfeld also actualised many cinema productions such as Automat Kalashnikov and Minik. His works have been highly acclaimed; he has won the Grimme Award in silver for The Beaten Mountain and the Bavarian Film Award for Antarctica Project.
Director and Author
Uta Kolano was born in 1966 in Erfurt and studied Philosophy at the Humboldt University of Berlin. Following that she worked as a dramatic adviser and deputy program manager for the former ORB (East German Broadcasting Brandenburg). Since 1995 she has been a freelance author and director for multiple national and public broadcasters such as the MDR, rbb and WDR as well as the Franco-German TV network Arte. She has been holding a lectureship at the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg since 2010.
Program manager at rbb
Sandra Niemann studied journalism, modern history and political science at the Freie Universität Berlin. She then went on to a traineeship at the radio station „Freies Berlin“ (Radio Free Berlin). Later she worked as an editor for news broadcasts such as rbb-Aktuell and Brandenburg Aktuell. Since 2009 she is a member of the program department at rbb.
Following his studies in social sciences and journalism Jan Tenhaven worked as a correspondent in London from 1998 to 2001. He then moved to Berlin and has been working as a freelance author and director of documentaries for TV and cinema since. His documentary Autumn Gold won several awards, such as the Filmmakers Award (HotDoc Film Festival Toronto), the Grand Prize Of The Jury (GZ DOC, China) as well as the Hyves IDFA DOC U Award for the youth jury's favourite film.
VFX Supervisor and director
Robert Blalack's success as a VFX Supervisor began with Industrial Light & Magic, an American studio for special effects. In 1975 he worked on the Film Star Wars – Episode IV: A New Hope, for which he shared an Academy Award for „Best Effects and Best Visuals“. Shortly after that he founded Praxis Film Works and concentrated on the television industry. He shared an Emmy Award for „Outstanding Individual Achievement – Special Effects“ for his work on The Day After.
Director and Author
After completing his studies at the Utrecht School of the Arts Paul Driessen went on to begin his career in animation in the advertising industry. In 1967 he worked on the Beatles' animated film Yellow Submarine. Not much later he emigrated to Canada where he worked for the National Film Board of Canada. Since 1976 he has been actualising many films for independent producers in the Netherlands. Paul Driessen has received many international awards for his work. His filmography includes films such as 3Misses, 2D or not 2D and Oh What a Nico.
Character Designer and Author
Florian Satzinger was a student of Disney, MGM and Hanna-Barbera animator and Animation Director Ken Southworth (Alice in Wonderland, Woody Woodpecker, Tom & Jerry) who greatly influenced his style. Today Satzinger works as a character designer and author for clients such as Warner Bros., Disney and Red Bull. Since 2011, he has also been working on Toby Skybuckle and StarDucks for the French media group Ankama. Parallel to his work in the animated film industry he teaches Media Analysis and History of Animation at the University of Applied Sciences Salzburg.
Animator, Illustrator and Character Designer
While studying communications design Karen Strempel was already working as a freelance graphic designer for various firms. Following the completion of her studies she founded the company Underfrog Design in 2004. Shortly after that she met animator Stini Sebald of trickfilmlounge and became her business partner. The animation studio produces its own animated films as well as animations for different sectors: short films, commercials, music videos, interactive museum installations and TV-shows.
Axel Bosse knows how to find words and hit nerves. His songs express the essence of yearning, hope, pain and love in words and sounds that are both airy and precise. His fourth Album Wartesaal reached number 16 in the German album charts, the tours for spring and autumn were both sold out and over 20 festivals saw Axel Bosse perform. His songs Weit weg, Wartesaal and Frankfurt/Oder continue to be heard on the radio.
After completing his film studies in 2003 Marc Helfers mostly shot independent documentaries and won his first awards (such sehsüchte 2001). In the last few years he has dedicated himself to film for music. He has made over 50 music videos for varied national and international artists (Madsen, Element of Crime, Philipp Poisel, Andreas Bourani, Maria Mena). 2011 he was nominated for the Echo music award for best music video with the band Unheilig.
Valentin Thurn is author of more than 40 TV documentaries and reports on social, developmental, environmental and education policy topics. His travels have brought him to over 40 countries on all continents. He has won numerous awards for his films and in 2006 was nominated for the German Television Award with Ich bin Al Kaida (I am Al-Qaida). His newest film, the documentary Taste The Waste premiered at the 2011 Berlinale and won various awards, such as the Deutsche Umweltmedienpreis (German Environment Media Award) and the first award of the Atlantis Umwelt- und Naturfilmfests (Atlantis Environment and Nature Filmfestival).
Erwin Wagenhofer is director of successful documentaries and feature films such as We feed the World, Let’s Make Money and Black, Brown, White for which he has won awards such as the FIPRESCI Prize, the German Documentary Film Prize (Deutscher Dokumentarfilmpreis) and the Amnesty International Human Rights Award. Wagenhofer completed his studies at the Institute for Technology in Vienna. As well as working as a director and author he is a lecturer at various Universities. He lives in Vienna.
Member of the German Bundestag.
Valerie Wilms has been sitting in the German Bundestag for the The Greens since 2009. She is also a member of the parlametary advisory council for sustainable development because she cares about intergenerational equity. In her opinion economy, ecology and social issues should always be of the same political importance. Wilms studied mechanical engineering at the Technical University of Hannover and earned her doctorate at the Helmut Schmidt University of Hamburg. Before moving into the Bundestag she spent many years working as an engineer for industrial safety and as a technical writer. She is also an assistant lecturer at the University of Applied Sciences of Dresden.
Henning Kamm founded DETAiLFILM with Fabian Gasmia in 2007. Their first short films celebrated success at festivals such as the Berlinale, Sundance, Karlovy Vary and Venice and were shown in museums such as the MoMA / New York. They also won a LOLA – the German Short Film Award in gold, the Crystal Globe and the Robert Bosch Filmförderpreis. DETAiLFILM aims to tell capturing, original stories from all over the world.
Stefan Gieren studied film production at the Hamburg Media School. His final year film RAJU won the Producer's Award at last year's Sehsüchte Festival. This film is currently nominated for an Oscar in the category „Best Live Action Short Film“. Stefan Gieren's company Fiction 2.0 produces socially committed material and crossmedial narrative experiments.
Funding advisor Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg
As funding advisor Daniel Saltzwedel is responsible for the areas of feature film and cinema documentary film. Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg supports filmmakers in their material and project development, the production and distribution with regional funds.
Head of Programming First Steps
Born in Bonn, Andrea Hohnen studied Music in Florence and Stuttgart as well as Theatre, Film and Television studies in Berlin. She has also worked as a cabaret artist, theatre director, video lecturer, documentary filmmaker, in public relations at the DFFB (German Film and Television Academy Berlin) and as programme director at the european feature and short film competitions of the Filmfestival Ludwigsburg/Stuttgart. Since 2000 she is the Head of Programming at the FIRST STEPS Awards and member of different selection committees and juries.
Wenka von Mikulicz
Boje Buck Script development
Born in Berlin in 1965, Wenka von Mikulicz grew up in Swabia. In 1987 she returned to the capital city to study and work at the theatre. Until 1993 she worked at the Schillertheater as assistant director. Later she worked at the Gorki-Theater and in other theatres outside of Berlin. She has been working in script development at the Boje Buck production company for over a decade. Her films include Same Same But Different, Jonas, and Woman in Love.
Born in 1953, Heide Schwochow studied pedagogy and journalism in Leipzig and Hannover. After she studied directing at the renowned „Ernst Busch“ Academy of Dramatic Arts she worked as assistant director, director and author for the GDR's broadcasting service. Later she worked as a freelance journalist, author and director at radio stations. Together with her son she has written screenplays for cinema productions such as Marta and Her Flying Grandfather, Novemberkind and Die Unsichtbare, which have won multiple awards.
Producer and dramatic adviser
Born in 1960 in Potsdam, Cooky Ziesche studied Film at the Film and Television University (HFF) „Konrad Wolf“. From 1986 on she worked as dramatic adviser for the Deutscher Fernsehfunk and later as program manager at the ORB (and later RBB).
She is currently supervising the RBB's feature film co-productions for the cinema.
Since 2001 she has also been working as a producer, co-author and freelance dramatic adviser (Stopped on Track, Black Brown White, Haus und Kind, Henri 4, Cloud 9, Whisky mit Wodka, and many more.)
Stephan Ababarnell, born 1957, is the director of central duties at the rbb, making him responsible of programme planing, editing and presentation. His media career began after the completion of his studies in protestant theology and rhetoric when he began working at the Gemeinschaftswerk der Evangelischen Publizistik (alliance of protestant journalism), which lead him to the rbb.
As funding advisor for the medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg Claudia Sauer is responsible for script and project development, production funding for feature films and new talent projects. She studied film studies, journalism and communication sciences in Berlin. Before joining the medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg she supervised new talent projects and documentary films at the MFG Filmförderung Baden-Württemberg (MFG film funding).
Jörg Schneider supervises feature and documentary films for the ZDF-editorial “Das kleine Fernsehspiel” dramaturgically and editorially. After studying political science and law he studied Film at the HfbK Hamburg (University of Fine Arts). He then worked as production manager and assistant director before he joined the ZDF as an editor. For the ZDF Schneider is also part of the First Movie Program and member of the jury for the Vienna Film Fund.
Björn Vosgerau, born 1970, is producer and associate at Wüste Film. Following his studies in philosophy and a diploma in culture and media management he was a dramatic advisor for Studio Hamburg. After his switch to Wüste Film in 2004 he was associate producer and producer of numerous cinema productions such as Emma's Bliss, Underdogs, The Calling Game, Ein Tick anders and Arschkalt.