Bringing Ecology to the Big Screen | Culture| Arts, music and lifestyle reporting from Germany | DW | 05.12.2001
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Bringing Ecology to the Big Screen

The 1. International Ecology Film Festival, Ecomove, is on in Berlin showing nature films from six European countries.


From the French film "Aral, a Sea of Thirst"

Have you ever wondered what the world from the perspective of a duckling may look like? And what 120 million crabs do when in danger of yellow ants? These, and other environmental topics are on show at the International Ecological Film Festival, "Ecomove" in Berlin.

Not only is the new Harry Potter film attracting thousands of people to the capital's cinemas, but various more unknown – yet just as exciting - films are pulling in the crowds. Around 50 films from six countries are on show at the cinema CineStar at Potsdamer Platz. All have one thing in common – they focus on the environment, and are part of the International Ecological Film Festival in Berlin.

The Berlin Festival is the first of its kind. Although "ecological" film festivals have existed in Europe for up to thirty years, Ecomove is the first one to take place in the German capital.

Each of the six countries represented has handed in films on global ecology, ranging from documentaries, feature and animation films. Apart from being shown to the public, the films are up for competition. The best films in the various categories – documentary and feature – will receive an Ecomove award, and 5000 euro.

The prizes will be awarded by Jordanian Queen Noa, who is well known for her commitment to environmental issues. Queen Noa is not the only celebrity to take part in the festival: German Environment Minister Jürgen Trittin and German actor Otto Sander are on the competition jury.

Environmental awareness on the big screen

The idea of the festival is to make the general public more aware of environmental and global issues – via film. But not only does the festival act as a visual forum, focusing on the environment through moving images, it is also a place for exchanging ideas on environmental conservation.

The festival also includes workshops, exhibitions and debates. Discussions on environmental communication, firm strategies and journalistic analysis are all up on the festival agenda. And some film producers have travelled to Berlin from countries as far as India, to present and explain their films.

The network behind Ecomove was formed by six international ecology film festivals including Italy, Slovakia and Germany. Their aim is to make the role of film in environmental conservation stronger. Each producer shows his or her very own personal view of an environmental issue. Whether critical nature documentary or humorous animal film – both belong to the species "Ecological Film".

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