The Berlin Film Festival organisers have made a commitment to work towards gender equality.

Out of the 400 films to be screened at this year’s Berlinale, almost half were directed by women. When it comes to the 17 films competing for the festival’s main prize, the Golden Bear, seven boast female directors. 

“We still have a lot to do to achieve gender equality,” said festival chief Dieter Kosslick, who signed a pledge to promote more women in the film industry across multiple areas.

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The festival aims to have more women in its jury, within its film line-up, and its staff. 

“We never had this in our history, and it proves that it was the right decision,” said Kosslick.

Gale Anne Hurd, producer of hits like Terminator, Aliens, and The Walking Dead said the pledge sends a signal that the wider film industry needs to change so that successful female directors and producers are no longer exceptions. 

Hurd, who is a special guest at this year’s festival, added: “The Berlin festival is actually doing much better than let’s say Venice or Cannes.”

“Sometimes you have to shame people into doing the right thing, I don’t necessarily believe that that’s the best thing, which is why this initiative is encouraging people.”

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