LICHTBLICK FILM, based in Cologne, was established in 1986 as an independent film production company and has been active ever since in the domestic and international market as a producer of high-end documentary films and series' as well as feature films for cinema and television.
In early 2008, LICHTBLICK FILM managing directors Joachim Ortmanns and Carl-Ludwig Rettinger together with Martin Heisler established LICHTBLICK MEDIA in Berlin.
In the documentary genre we have helped realized films including Mika Kaurismäki's award-winning Tigrero (with Samuel Fuller and Jim Jarmusch), which was honored with the Fipresci Prize at the Berlinale; Out of Tibet by Solveig Klassen, which won the Bavarian Documentary Film Award and was nominated for the Joris Ivens Award in Amsterdam; Massaker by Monika Borgmann, Lokman Slim and Hermann Theißen, winner of the Berlinale's Fipresci Prize and the Jury Award at Visions du Réel in Nyon.
Among other honors, our German-Israeli co-production, Nadav Schirman's The Champagne Spy, was named Best Documentary Film at the Israeli Film Academy Awards, won the John Schlesinger Award in Palm Springs and was nominated for a European Film Award.
Our television documentaries, too, have received industry accolades. The Elephant Affair, about a legendary incident which saw a circus elephant jump out of the famous Wuppertal overhead hanging streetcar; The Final Kick, about the 1994 European football world championships; the hippie-family saga The Big Pink and Facing the Dead, about the art of retouching Stalin's likenesses – all of the above are recipients of the Adolf Grimme Award and the later also won the Golden Gate Award in San Francisco for Best TV Documentary.
Our most recent made-for-TV production, a two-part film for the ARD, is an elaborate historical docu-drama on the high seas. Hunt the Kaiser's Cruisers, relives a dramatic sea chase across the oceans of the world as two German Imperial Naval vessels try to make it home from the other side of the globe against all odds.
LICHTBLICK FILM has also made its name as a leading producer of documentary series'. It all began in 2000 with the Grimme Award-winning 10-part docu-soap Five Fighting the Flab, and many chapters have been added to the success story since, most recently with the living history series Brides-in-Training, 1958.
In the realm of fiction, our activities cover the spectrum from television, debut and feature films to major international co-productions.
The love story Alone, successfully launched by distributors Zorro Film Verleih, won the Interfilm Jury Award at the Max Ophüls Festival and leading actress Lavinia Wilson was named Best Female Newcomer. Bastian Günther's episodic film Autopilots had its world premiere at the Berlinale (segment: Perspective German Cinema), was awarded the MFG Star at Baden-Baden and was nominated at Banff for Best TV Movie.
2008 saw the making of Coxless Pair directed by Jobst Oetzmann. A buddy drama with a competitive rowing theme based on a novella by Dirk Kurbjuweit, the leading roles were played by two major young acting talents Jacob Matschenz and Tino Mewes.
We have been partners in international co-productions including The Wedding directed by Pawel Lungin and Divine Intervention directed by Elia Suleiman, both of which won awards at Cannes.
Over many years now, LICHTBLICK FILM has remained true to its founding concept: to tell substantive, gripping and entertaining stories in a personal and innovative manner. In future we will continue to develop and produce high-quality films and television programs with a signature note of individuality, spanning the genre spectrum from sophisticated entertainment to arthouse, in collaboration with partners from over 40 countries, including the BBC, PBS, CH4, FR3, RAI, TVE, DRS, ORF, CBC, NKT, HO and RTBF among many others.