Berlinale picks Alexandre Koberidze's feature for world premiere

The feature will present the director's look at romantic partners separated by an unexpected transformation of their appearance. Screenshot from a Georgian National Film Centre video about the film., 11 Feb 2021 - 17:59, Tbilisi,Georgia

Nearly three decades after a film by a Georgian director last competed for the principal award at the Berlin International Film Festival, director Alexandre Koberidze will see his feature What Do We See When We Look at the Sky? screen at the event in June.

At the 71st edition of Berlinale, Koberidze's German-Georgian co-production will have its world premiere alongside works by directors including Hong Sangsoo, Dénes Nagy and Daniel Brühl.

Featuring Georgian actors Ani Karseladze, Giorgi Bochorishvili and Vakhtang Fanchulidze as protagonists, the film will bring the filmmaker's look at romantic partners waking up one day with changed appearances and losing contact with one another as a result.

In a conversation with the Georgian National Film Centre - which supported the production - Koberidze said he was "interested in magical elements ... and what people facing [unforeseen consequences of encountering] them could do."

Koberidze is not a stranger to the Berlin Film Festival, with his feature Let the Summer Never Come Again earning the German Film Critics Association Prize at the 2018 edition. Winner of two awards at the 2017 Marseille International Film Festival, the film was named Best Experimental Film in the German capital.

The last time a work by a Georgian filmmaker was selected for the main Berlinale programme was in 1993, when Temur Babluani's acclaimed feature The Sun of the Sleepless earned the Silver Bear at the event for "outstanding artistic achievement".

This year's festival will also screen Georgian director Salome Jashi's new documentary Taming the Garden. Organisers will host the screening part of Berlinale between June 9-20, with an online industry event preceding it next month.