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Berlinale 2011 | Teddy Awards Announce Best in Queer Film

Berlinale 2011 | Teddy Awards Announce Best in Queer Film

The 2011 Teddy Awards, a subprogram of the Berlinale that puts the spotlight on the fest’s LGBT/queer content, were announced tonight at a special “jubilee gala” at Tempelhof airport. Leading the pack were “Ausente” by Marco Berger, which won the best feature award, and best doc winner “The Ballad of Genesis and Lady Jaye,” the story of the pansexual couple (one, member of the bands Psychic TV and Throbbing Gristle; the other, recently deceased) that underwent cosmetic surgery to look alike and to live as one. The Teddy jury is comprised of queer festival programmers from around the world.

The following is the complete list of Teddy Award winners:

Best Feature Film – “Ausente” by Marco Berger
Best Documentary – “The Ballad of Genesis and Lady Jaye” by Marie Losier
Best Short Film – “Generations” by Barbara Hammer and Gina Carducci and “Maya Deren’s Sink” by Barbara Hammer
Jury Prize – “Tomboy” by Celine Sciamma
Special Teddy Awards: South African drag performer and HIV/AIDS activist Pieter-Dirk Uys and recently deceased New German Cinema director Werner Schroeter

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Laura Costantino

Thanks Bob for reminding us of where we are coming from and that we still have a long way to go.


Thank you, Hawk, for th history of this. And congratulations to Barbara Hammer!

Jesse Westbrook

NOTE….The great Werner Schroeter died of cancer in 2010. He directed Cannes Award-Winner “Malina” and 40 other fiction, documentary, and television films. He won 18 international awards, including Venice and Berlin Festivals. His last film was made only 2 years before his death. Multi-talented creator Schroeter was also a cinematographer, actor, writer, music composer, editor, and did sound, make-up, etc. We’ve lost another unique, brilliant artist.

bob hawk

That “jubilee gala” actually celebrates the 25th anniversary of the Teddy Awards. The 1987 awards were held in Berlin’s first gay bookstore (the Prinz- Eisenherz), with tiny TV monitors scattered around the store on stacks of books, playing VHS tapes of selections from that year’s gay crop. “Real” teddy bears (fuzzy, that is) were handed out, as opposed to the bronze statues of today. And it was many years before the announcement of the winners was recognized by the larger Berlinale with an “official” press release.

That year also marked the first meeting of gay film festival programmers (and gay filmmakers, journalists, etc.) The Wall had not fallen yet, and we heard from the brave people of some of those countries still behind the Iron Curtain — tales of clandestine underground screenings (sometimes literally: in a basement) of smuggled film prints (16mm and 8mm in those days).

We’ve come a long way — but let’s not forget that there are still countries where such festivals are harassed and even prevented, and there are still brave souls who are willing to get bloodied, beaten and jailed to shed light in those murky, crumbling corners.

Ever onward! .

Barbara Hammer

Thank you Bob for bringing us up to date on such important historical matters.
And, yes, the tribute so well-spoken of the brave souls who continue to screen
queer work in countries who repress our presence in film, video, digital media and

It is an honor for Gina and I to receive the Teddy for Best Short Film for Generations
and for me to be honored similarly for Maya Deren’s Sink!

We are thrilled.


Slightly disappointed in the doc choice. Visually interesting, but i learned nothing about the couple, and i felt major parts of the story were rushed. I would have leaned toward We Were Here as the choice to win.

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