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Berlin: ‘The Teacher’s Lounge’ Wins Best European Film Prize



İlker Çatak’s The Teachers’ Loungea German drama set in a primary school, has won the Europa Cinemas Label as Best European film in the Panorama section of the 2023 Berlin International Film Festival.

Leonie Benesch (Babylon Berlin, Around the World in 80 Days) stars in The Teacher’s Lounge as an idealistic and ambitious young teacher who finds herself at odds with fellow teachers, parents and an inflexible and frustrating bureaucracy. Leonard Stettnisch, Eva Löbau, Michael Klammer, Anne-Kathrin Gummich, Kathrin Wehlisch, Uygar Tamer, and Özgür Karadeniz co-star.

“The film explores key subjects like the prevalence of bureaucracy in schools and issues of race and class, but above all it is a compelling rollercoaster of a drama,” the Europa Cinemas jury said in a statement.

The Europa Cinemas prize is backed by the Europa Cinemas theater network, an association of independent theater owners, representing more than 3,000 screens in over 700 cities across Europe, which focuses on the promotion and distribution of European cinema. The network is supported by funding from the European Union’s MEDIA program and from France’s CNC.

As this year’s Europa Cinemas winner, The Teacher’s Lounge will receive promotional support to help its release across the theater network. Produced by Ingo Fliess for Germany’s if…Productions, The Teacher’s Lounge is being sold internationally by Be For Films.

Previous Berlin Europa Cinema winners include Felix van Groeningen’s Belgian drama The Broken Circle Breakdown (2013), When We Leave (2013) from Austrian filmmaker Feo Aladag, Eskil Vogt’s Norwegian feature Blind (2014), and last year’s winner, the Icelandic drama Beautiful Beings from director Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson.

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