Ffa at 50: Fund Revitalized German Films After Post-War Slump
Launched in 1968, when the country’s film industry was in steep decline, the German Federal Film Board was instrumental in revitalizing the sector both financially and creatively.Despite some major box office successes in the 1950s, the local film business was facing a number of critical problems, including difficulties stemming from postwar restrictions imposed on the country’s industries by the Allied victors, a general lack of capital, the growing dominance of Hollywood productions and the soaring popularity of television.
Between 1956 and 1962, a slew of production companies and distributors folded as box office admissions plunged from 817 million to 443 million.The industry’s decline led 26 young German filmmakers in 1962 to sign the Oberhausen Manifesto, calling for a new, more independent kind of film, free from conventions and the control of commercial backers.
The declaration was the birth of New German Cinema and paved the way for the Film Promotion Act, which
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