22.04. ‐ 27.04.2025

About LICHTER Filmfest

The LICHTER Filmfest Frankfurt International is a celebration of film. It brings together the region, its audience and its creatives with guests from all over the world. In 2022 it celebrated its 15th anniversary. The bridging of film, artistic expressions and social dialogue makes LICHTER something special among German film festivals.

The idea of LICHTER is quickly explained: Just as a hand is made of five fingers, the LICHTER Film Festival is also made of five sections. And just as a hand can form its fingers into a fighting fist, LICHTER also bundles its five sections into a strong unit that sets all kinds of things in motion year after year.


International programme

The festival programme not only aims to entertain, but also to combine cinema and discourse. That is why the international programme focuses on a different theme each year. The thrilling topicality of this theme allows socio-political questions to be examined from within the cinema and discussed from multiple perspectives thanks to the films. This happens in numerous keynotes, panels and discussion rounds. In addition, LICHTER seeks collaboration with other cultural institutions and artistic disciplines each year.

LICHTER has already dedicated itself to the themes of "City", "Revolution", "Humour", "Money", "Borders", "Truth", "Chaos", "Nature", "Power", "Change", "Freedom" and "Love". The 17th edition of the festival in 2024 will revolve around the theme of "Future".

© Philipp Goldberg

The Future of German Film

When people talk about the future of German film, they usually think of young filmmakers. In order to show and support their films, many awards for young emerging artists are offered. But what about the future of German film regardless of the age of its filmmakers? That is what the film series ZUKUNFT DEUTSCHER FILM is about. Its curation focuses on German film itself. It aims to track down its opportunities and lines of development, to encourage it where it has the most artistic confidence, and finally to show that German film, in its most successful renditions, is far better than its reputation.

ZUKUNFT DEUTSCHER FILM, however, is not only a film series, but also an initiative and a congress: as such, it is dedicated to German filmmaking in a European context and has set itself the goal of finally consolidating the relevance of German cinematic art beyond the borders of the republic in close cooperation with opinion makers, agitators and relevant institutions in the field of film.

© Dirk Hoy

Regional Film

The regional short and feature film competitions give the incredibly various filmmaking from Kassel to Marburg and Giessen to the Rhine-Main region its well-deserved publicity and strengthen it, especially in the exchange with the national and international competition. Two juries, always staffed with renowned characters, annually award the coveted LICHTER-Bembel in both large and small versions.

© Philipp Goldberg

Art Award

In 2010, the section for video art started with the exhibition "Stimulus Kino - Subliminal Cinema". The following year, the LICHTER Art Award was founded and since then has invited artists from all over the world to an international competition to present their works from the field of contemporary video art. An international jury selects five finalists whose films are exhibited during the LICHTER Film Festival. One of the works will be honoured with the LICHTER Art Award. To mark the tenth anniversary, a large exhibition was held on the premises of basis e.v.

© Katrin Binner

VR Storytelling Award

With the advance of digitalisation, moving images are increasingly moving into space, removing the boundaries between the film world and the audience and transporting them directly and immediately to other places. For film, this brings new possibilities of expression. The LICHTER VR Storytelling Award, launched in 2017, is dedicated to the numerous varieties of alternative realities. The experiences gained in presentation since then also flowed into the concept for a House of Film Cultures presented by LICHTER in 2021, which translates the cultural space of cinema into the future through its diversity of use and architecture.

© Pascal Jackel