The Berlinale awards an Honorary Golden Bear to important film personalities. The award honors a particularly outstanding oeuvre or film career and is regularly given to the guest of honour of the Homage. Additional Honorary Golden Bears can be given independently of the Homage section.
The Honorary Golden Bear is awarded during a festive ceremony usually followed by the screening of a film in the Berlinale Special programme.
The Honorary Golden Bear is visually identical to the festival's highest award, the Golden Bear. The Bears inspired the Berlinale logo and were designed by the Berlin sculptor Renée Sintenis (1888-1965). They have been produced by the Noack Foundry in Berlin since the beginnings of the Berlinale. The bear is also the official symbol of the city of Berlin.
Honorary Golden Bear to Armin Mueller-Stahl
Armin Mueller-Stahl at the Berlinale 2009
German actor and artist Armin Mueller-Stahl will be awarded an Honorary Golden Bear for Lifetime Achievement at the 61st Berlin International Film Festival.
Armin Mueller-Stahl has played a wide variety of characters over the course of his 50-year career, and worked with many famous directors including Andrzej Wajda, Jim Jarmusch and Steven Soderbergh. He began his career in East Germany, performing under the direction of Frank Beyer in films like Nackt unter Wölfen (1963, Naked Among Wolves) and Jakob der Lügner (1974, Jacob the Liar). After moving to West Germany in 1980, he attracted international attention with films such as Lola (1981) by Rainer Werner Fassbinder and Music Box (1989) by Costa-Gavras. In 1996, he was nominated for an Oscar for his role in Shine (directed by: Scott Hicks). In 2003 he won the Adolf Grimme Award for his performance as Thomas Mann in Heinrich Breloer’s 3-part TV film Die Manns – ein Jahrhundertroman (The Manns - Novel of a Century). Most recently he appeared on the screen in Ron Howard’s adaptation of the bestseller Illuminati (2009).
Armin Mueller-Stahl has been a guest of the Berlin International Film Festival several times. In 1992 he was awarded the Silver Bear for his performance in Utz (directed by: George Sluizer); and in 1997, the Berlinale Camera. In 2006 he was a member of the International Jury; and in 2009, a guest of the Berlinale Competition as a member of the cast of the opening film The International by Tom Tykwer.
In the last years, Armin Mueller-Stahl has increasingly focused on painting and music.