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XXVIII. Black International Cinema Berlin
"Future Blossoms" / "Blüten der Zukunft"

May 8-12

"Footprints in the Sand?" Exhibition
"...Visions Become Reality..." / "...Visionen Werden Wirklichkeit..."

July 1-August 31


Venue: Rathaus Schöneberg (city hall), John-F.-Kennedy-Platz, 10825 Berlin/Germany

english / deutsch

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Grußwort by the U.S. Cultural Attaché
on the occasion of the XXVIIIth Black International Cinema Berlin
May 8-12, 2013

For the twenty-eighth time, the Black International Cinema is enriching the city of Berlin with a five-day program dedicated to cinematic story-telling, calling attention to diversity around the globe. This year's festival is special not only because 2013 marks the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s legendary I Have A Dream speech, but also because Berlin will commemorate President Kennedy's Ich bin ein Berliner address that he delivered at the Schöneberg City Hall in the summer of 1963. In light of these two outstanding American personalities - deeply engraved in the collective conscience of both Germans and Americans - I am delighted that the Black International Cinema Berlin is taking place in a momentous year and at such a historically notable location.

As a medium, film can serve various functions. It can educate as much as it can entertain. Film evokes emotions. It can make the human mind travel and encounter unimagined worlds. This year's festival brings a vivid diversity to Berlin. Beyond the tribute that will be paid to award-winning U.S. filmmaker William Greaves, the program features documentaries and short movies. Set in the small town of Marlin, Texas, Tomlinson Hill tells the story of a former slave plantation and the struggle of the slaves' direct descendants to unify their crumbling community in the face of 150 years of racial discrimination and class separation. Return to the World of Dance is an experimental short movie in honor of Fernand Léger's Dadaist art film Ballet Mécanique that was co-produced by filmmaker Dudley Murphy with cinematographic input from Man Ray. Ralph Bunche: An American Odyssey tells the compelling life story of an African American civil rights activist and pioneering diplomat.

The U.S. Embassy in Berlin is very proud to support the festival as it honors and fosters the broad scope of black cinema and alternative sources of story-telling internationally. The Berlin International Film Festival - the Berlinale - came into being as part of the U.S. Marshall Plan. Sixty-three years later, the importance of this very special festival lies in its aspiration to present the many faces of cinema. On behalf of the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, I very much hope that you enjoy the wide array of this year's cinematic experiences.

Roll it!

Katharina Gollner-Sweet
U.S. Cultural Attaché

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