The public programme of the Berlin International Film Festival shows about 400 films per year, mostly international or European premieres.
Films of every genre, length and format find their place in the various sections: great international cinema in the Competition, independent and art house in Panorama, films for young audiences in Generation, new discoveries and promising talents from the German film scene in Perspektive Deutsches Kino, avant garde, experimental and unfamiliar cinematography in the Forum and Forum Expanded, and an exploration of cinematic possibilities in Berlinale Shorts.
New and extraordinary productions are shown under the auspices of the Berlinale Special and the Berlinale Special Gala. Their function is to honour great cinema personalities and to immerse audiences in cinematic history by screening film classics. Food, pleasure and the environment – these are the topics that lie at the centre of the Culinary Cinema. The programme is rounded out by a Retrospective as well as an Homage, which focuses on the œuvre of a great personality of cinema, curated by the Deutsche Kinemathek – Museum für Film und Fernsehen.
Furthermore the Berlinale has regularly organised a programme of special presentations that open up new perspectives, provide insight into key themes, make new connections and explore realms where film intersects with other creative disciplines.