The Berlin International Film Festival has confirmed that it will open next month with Jean-Jacques Annaud's $90m Stalingrad epic Enemy At The Gates.
The true-life story set against the battle of Stalingrad stars Jude Law, Ed Harris, Joseph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz and Bob Hoskins, plus local talent such as Matthias Habich and Eva Mattes.
The Mandalay Pictures film was partly financed by the private German media fund KC Medien. Local industry insiders hope the film's selection will raise Germany's profile as a location for international film production since the film was shot in Babelsberg and on location in Brandenburg, while post was conducted in Munich, Dusseldorf and Berlin.
"Although we know that everyone is against war, we cannot ignore the gruesome events of the past," said outgoing festival director Moritz de Hadeln "With this film, director Jean-Jacques Annaud has brilliantly shed light on a chapter of German history. From the massive crowd scenes to the tiniest details he and his team of German technicians successfully demonstrate that Germany and Europe are in a position to effectively realise such major projects and thus challenge the idea that Americans have a monopoly on such works."
The festival's 51st edition runs Febuary 7 to 18.