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Company Profile

pong was founded in 2001 by Berlin based cultural producers Merle Kröger and Philip Scheffner. Both had gathered film production experience in the video collective dogfilm from 1992 - 2000.

pong stands for the production of creative documentaries and features on the border to the arts – films in which the filmmakers’ aesthetic and political positions are formed and expressed. 

Merle Kröger has expertise as scriptwriter, dramaturg and novelist. She is co-author of several films by Philip Scheffner. Furthermore, she has published four novels with argument since 2003. She received the German Crime Novel Award in 2013 and 2016. A fifth novel will be released in 2020 with Suhrkamp. Since 2007 she works for Berlinale Talents, Doc Station. Since 2011 she is co-director and mentor at the Professional Media Master Class for Documentary Film in Halle (Saale). 

Philip Scheffner has been working as a visual artist since 1985. His feature length creative documentaries The Halfmoon Files (2007)Day of the Sparrow (2010)Revision (2012) and Havarie (2016) won numerous awards, have been released in cinema and were shown around the world. Scheffner's first fiction film Europe, currently in post production, will premiere in 2020. As part of pong, his focus is project development and editing.

Caroline Kirberg & Alex Gerbaulet, filmmakers and producers, are on board of pong since 2014. 

Caroline Kirberg has specialized in the production of interdisciplinary and innovatively conceived films on the border to the arts. Next to being pong's head producer, Kirberg has been producing for wellknown artists like Clemens von Wedemeyer, Dani Gal, Assaf Gruber, Stephan Geene, Volker Sattel and Clarissa Thieme. She teaches film production at film and art schools. 

Alex Gerbaulet has a record of many years of practice-based and film-theoretical teaching at different German art schools and has worked as a curator for film festivals, like Dokfest Kassel and Duisburger Filmwoche. Her short films Shift (2015), Depth of Field (2017) and The Sleeper (2018) won many awards and have been shown around the world.

pong has been the production hub of films by Dorothee Wenner (Peace Mission, Kinshasa Collection), Philip Widmann and Dan Nguyen (A House in Ninh Hoa), Khaled Abdulwahed and Amel Alzakout. Abdulwahed's short Backyard (2018) is currently touring worldwide festivals. The documentary Purple Sea by Alzakout/ Abdulwahed will have its world premiere at Berlinale 2020, Forum Expanded. 

Together we focus on up-coming artists and filmmakers and international co-productions, aiming to expand pong as a platform for moving images as well as sounds, music and text.

Currently the pong team is supported by Mareike Bernien and Julie Carvalho. We are producing Philip Scheffners first fiction film PLACE DE L’EUROPE, a feature length documentary by Alex Gerbaulet and Mareike Bernien, an online web archive of German Indian filmmaker Navina Sundaram and several other projects in development.

Latest Films:
BACKYARD GER 2018, short film by Khaled Abdulwahed
WP: FID Marseille 2018 / International Competition
Awards: CNAP (National Centre for Visual Arts) / FID Marseille

THE SLEEPER GER 2018, short film by Alex Gerbaulet
Funded by nordmedia, Der Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien, Landschaftsverband Stade, Stader Stiftung für Kultur und Geschichte
WP: 68. Berlinale - International Filmfestival Berlin / 13. Forum Expanded

KINSHASA COLLECTION / 2017, i-doc by Dorothee Wenner
Co-produced by Goethe-Institut
Funded by German Federal Cultural Foundation (TURN), Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin

Track Record
HAVARIE GER 2016 / Film by Philip Scheffner
Co-produced by Blinker Film, worklights media and ZDF/ARTE
WP: Berlin International Film Festival 2016 / Forum
IP: FID Marseille 2016
Awards: German Film Critics Award for Best Experimental Film 2016, arte-documentary award / Duisburger Filmwoche, Best international feature film / L'Alternativa Barcelona, Best editing in an international feature / RIDM - Montreal international documentary festival, special  mention - prix georges de beauregard international / FID Marseille

AND-EK GHES GER 2016 / Film by Philip Scheffner & Colorado Velcu
Co-produced by rbb
WP: Berlin International Film Festival 2016 / Forum
Nominated for Grimme Preis and German Film Critics Award 2016 (in the sections Documentary and Best Camera)

A HOUSE IN NINH HOA GER 2016 / Film by Philip Widmann & Nguyen Dan-Phuong
Co-produced by ZDF/ARTE / funded by FFHSH, MBB
WP: Visions du Réel

THE WORLD, ALMOST GER 2016 / Short Film by Caroline Kirberg
Funded by BKM, research funded by Kreis Lippe and Stadt Bad Salzuflen

SCHICHT GER 2015 / Short Film by Alex Gerbaulet 
WP: International Short Film Festival Oberhausen May 2015 / Main Award German Competition
IP: FID Marseille July 2015 / Main Award First Film
Awards: German Film Critics Award 2015, Best Female Director Award / Vienna Independent Shorts 2016, Jury Award German Competition / International Short Film Festival Hamburg 2016, Best Documentary Film / Moscow International Experimental Film Festival 2016, Best Short Film / L’Alternativa Festival de Cinema Independent de Barcelona 2016

HAVARIE GER 2015 / Novel by Merle Kröger
Based on the research for the film with the same title, German Crime Novel Award 2016 (2nd place, national)

CHAURANGA India 2014 / Film by Bikas Ranjan Mishra
produced by: anticlock Films in coproduction with pong (and others)
Awards: Grand Jury Prize Best Film IFFLA Los Angeles, Best Film India Gold Mumbai International Film Festival, Incredible India Award for Best Project at Film Bazaar, Winner Goteborg International Film Festival Script Lab & Binger Film Lab, Selected for Paris Project
Theatrical release in India January 2016

DRAMA CONSULT GER 2013 / Film by Dorothee Wenner
Co-produced by Goethe-Institute Nigeria and ZDF/ARTE

GRENZFALL GER 2012 / Novel by Merle Kröger
Based on the research for the film REVISION, German Crime Novel Award 2013

REVISION GER 2012 / Film by Philip Scheffner 
Co-produced by Blinker Film, worklights media and ZDF/arte
WP: Berlin International Film Festival 2012 / Forum young Film / IP: HotDocs Toronto 2012
Awards: Bild-Kunst Award for Editing, Award of Excellence Yamagata Film Festival, Fritz-Gerlich Award Film Fest Munich, Documentary Award GoEast Film Festival, shortlisted for the German Film Award LOLA 2013
World Sales: Deckert Distribution

I AM India 2011 / Film by Onir / Written by Onir, Merle Kröger, Urmi Juvekar
Produced by: anticlock Films in coproduction with pong (and others)
Awards: Best Hindi Feature Film & Best Lyrics at the 59th National Awards, Best Director at Jagaran Film Festival, Best Film & Best Actress at London Asian Film Festival, NETPAC Award for the Best in Asian Cinema at International Film Festival of Kerala, Audience Choice Award Best Film at River To River Film Festival Florence, Best Narrative Feature at Kashish Mumbai International Queer Festival, Winner of I-VIEW 2010s Engendered Award for Outstanding Contribution (Opening Film)

DAY OF THE SPARROW D 2010 / Film by Philip Scheffner 
Co-produced by Blinker Film, worklights media and ZDF/ARTE
WP: Berlin International Film Festival 2010 / Forum young Film / IP: FID Marseille 2010
Awards: Klaus-Wildenhahn-Award of the Hamburg Documentary Week 2010, City of Ludwigsburg Award at the German Documentary Awards 2011

PEACE MISSION D 2008 / Film von Dorothee Wenner
Produced in affiliation with ZDF/ARTE
WP/IP: Toronto International Film Festival / Real to Reel 2008
World Sales: First Hand Films

THE HALFMOON FILES D 2007 / Film von Philip Scheffner
In cooperation with Lautarchiv der Humboldt Universität zu Berlin and Stiftung Deutsches Rundfunkarchiv
WP: Berlin International Film Festival 2007 / Forum junger Film / IP: FID Marseille 2007
Awards: Documentary Film Award by Goethe Institute, Förderpreis der Stadt Duisburg Film Festival Duisburg, Best Documentary Award Film Festival Mar del Plata, Prix des Mediathèques FID Marseille, Award for best Documentation & Research Memorimage Festival