Alfred Döblin’s classic 1929 novel is more relevant than ever today: Burhan Qurbani uncovers the parallels to the social structures of our times and gives the story about the stumbling Franz Biberkopf a modern face – in the refugee Francis – and a new significance. Against the background of modern-day Berlin, BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ takes elements and characters from the novel and links them together to form a gripping, mercilessly honest big city and gangster ballad. The utopia of the story that even the weakest member of society can find his way into the heart of the community, this story of pride and fall and above all love and its exploitation is universal and goes straight to the heart. Excessive and dramatic, atmospherically tight and full of poetic force.
Qurbani has already proved his feeling for the marginal groups of our society, for complex and relevant themes produced for the big screen with powerful visual language, playful narrative forms and his own signature, with “Shahada” (2010) and “We Are Young. We Are Strong” (2014). He has once again been able to put together an extraordinary cast for BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ: Francis is played by Welket Bungué, who attracted attention with the film “Joaquim” at the 2017 Berlin Film Festival. The character of Reinhold is embodied by Albrecht Schuch (“Paula“, “Bad Banks”); Mieze is played by Jella Haase (“Suck Me Shakespeer 1-3”, “4 Kings”). Other cast members include Annabelle Mandeng (“Unknown Identity”) and Joachim Krol (“Lost in Siberia”). Qurbani wrote the screenplay with Martin Behnke (“We Are Young. We Are Strong”, “Dark”) and Yoshi Heimrath (“We Are Young. We Are Strong”, “Das Verschwinden”) is in charge of the camera. Filming took place in Summer 2018 in Berlin, Baden-Württemberg and in North Rhine Westphalia.
BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ is produced by Sommerhaus Filmproduktion (“In the Aisles”) with Jochen Laube, Leif Alexis and Fabian Maubach as producers, in co-production with ZDF, in collaboration with Arte. Dutch co-production company is Lemming Film. The film is sponsored by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg (MBB), Medien- und Filmgesellschaft Baden-Württemberg (MFG), Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, The Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media (BKM), German Federal Film Board (FFA), by German Federal Film Fund (DFFF), Netherlands Film Fund and the Netherlands Production Incentive. The film is developed with the support of Eurimages and Torino Film Lab. World sales are handled by Beta Cinema. Distribution company eOne Germany will be releasing BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ at German cinemas in 2019.