PT01 Interview                                                                                           10/2019

Mountain Film Tegernsee, 17th International Festival from 16 – 20 October 2019 

Many Guests, Strong Messages and a Beautiful Story   

It was an eventful festival with strong accents. In the following conversation, Festival Director Michael Pause explains what was particularly important to him.

Did this year’s high level of film quality surprise you?
Not really. We’ve always had a high-carat programme. Of course, there are always ups and downs. In principle we know that there is a lot of potential. It pleases me that this is also true for junior talent. We see great developments there. Our junior award winners are a prime example. These filmmakers had already submitted a film previously, which we had turned down, because it was not quite there yet. This time, Dominik and Julian Weigand scored the Prize for a Junior Filmmaker – that’s a beautiful story!

The appeal “Let’s finally do something about climate change” was omnipresent – that hasn’t happened before, has it?
Well, this perception and the fact that I get asked about it in almost every interview is definitely also a “Fridays for Future effect”. Heiner Geißler, our longstanding festival patron who died two years ago, often gave similar vehemence to the issue in his statements in Tegernsee. We’ve also already had many films with a critical stance about this issue in our programme. But I have to say, I was quite surprised when Toni Sponar, our first guest during the Opening Night, came on stage and immediately found some very strong words.

This year’s programme was packed with special events, such as Hillary’s 100th birthday, 150 years of the German Alpine Club (DAV), Bayern 2 Night, Commemoration of David Lama and Hansjörg Auer, to mention only a few highlights. That’s quite a lot, no?
I think it’s great to include such highlights. The audience took them fully on board, all of these events were well visited. It was my personal desire to once more remember David Lama and Hansjörg Auer. It was great that Alex Huber was willing to join us for that night and that he again emphasised the significant role of these two climbers in the development of alpinism. Another highlight was the Hillary night with interesting guests and the film by Padovano. That was original footage of the Everest ascent from 1953, which probably none of our visitors had seen before. That kind of thing thrills the audience, and that is why we care to create such accents.

And finally, the International Alliance for Mountain Film was visiting …
It was very special to have these twelve guests from all over the world. After all, those are the representatives of the world’s most important mountain film festivals, including such countries as Nepal and South Korea. Within the Alliance, we have great conversations on eye level, always with the goal of developing our organisation further and thus helping ourselves and the festivals to remain sustainable. Naturally, we also want to help the filmmakers in this way. One of the greatest challenges right now is digitalisation, and we were able to create important impulses there.

Such a positive response, so many enthusiastic viewers, you must already be looking forward to next year?
Definitely. But we don’t start planning until the day after tomorrow …