EFP (European Film Promotion) has presented the ten best up-and-coming actresses and actors from Europe for its 2020 European Shooting Stars. The 23rd edition of its talent promotion programme, financially supported by Creative Europe - MEDIA and the respective national film institutes, EFP`s member organisations, will put them into the spotlight from 21 to 24 February during the 70th Berlin International Film Festival (20 February - 1 March 2020), introducing them to the film industry, public and international press.
The outstanding talents were selected by a jury of industry experts, who deemed them ready to step out onto the international film scene. To support this, the programme offers them the opportunity to have one-on-one meetings with over 80 internationally operating casting directors, producers and filmmakers, laying the foundation for a professional network much needed when embarking upon an international career. The programme culminates in an awards ceremony at the Berlinale Palast on Monday 24 February, where each actor will be honoured with the European Shooting Stars Award.
Here are the ten, that thrilled the jury the most: Martina Apostolova from Bulgaria "lends her characters an archetypal power that can connect with all audiences" in Irina (2018), for which she won numerous Best Actress awards from Hong Kong to Tbilisi. In the performance of Estonian Shooting Star Pääru Oja in Mihkel (2018) they observed "the soul of a boy that shines in him, you always can find this infectious vitality with him." The performance of Victoria Carmen Sonne from Denmark "counters and transforms, challenges with grace, innocence and undaunted levity" as seen in Holiday (2018) for which she received the Danish Bodil Award and a nomination for the Danish Film Award among others. French actress Zita Hanrot convinced the jury because she "embodies and radiates a pure and primal force" as seen in the social drama School Life (2019). For his debut film And Then We Danced (2019), which garnered rave reviews and numerous awards, Levan Gelbakhiani from Georgia also received praise from the experts: "At only 21-years-old, he is already a master of physical elegance and psychological sensitivity".
German Shooting Star Jonas Dassler, who plays a serial killer in The Golden Glove (2019), nominated for the German Film Awards, was selected for his "commanding physical presence, bravery and sophistication." Only 20 years of age, Bilal Wahib from The Netherlands is this year`s youngest Shooting Star, but already an old hand at acting. He started acting at 13 and this year already took on leading roles in two Dutch productions, among them Paradise Drifters (2019), which will screen at Berlin`s Generation section. Watching his performance the jury was "touched by his childlike gentleness, riveted by his raw ferocity, shaken up by his genuine fears". Bartosz Bielenia from Poland, who plays the multi-award-winning lead in this year`s shortlisted Polish Oscar nomination Corpus Christi (2019) won the jury over by the way he "with his seemingly infinite faculties, walks the maddening paths of despair and redemption." In Joana Ribeiro from Portugal, who already worked with Antoine Fuqua and Terry Gilliam, the experts discovered a "spellbinding universe of enchantment and passion, anger and affection" as seen in Crooked Lines (2019). Ella Rumpf from Switzerland enthused them with her versatility. "The world is a stage for this chameleon-like performer that plays both her body and soul like instruments." A quality proven by her very diverse roles including Raw (2016) and the film she was nominated with, Sympathy for the Devil (2018).