The History of the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg

A brief overview of the most significant milestones in the history of the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg


FOUNDATION: The Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg is founded by Professor Albrecht Ade as a wholly owned subsidiary of the State of Baden-Wuerttemberg. On October 14, 82 students out of 220 applicants begin their studies in temporary facilities in Ludwigsburg.


During the first year of this DEVELOPMENT PHASE in the provisional quarters, the academy gains valuable experience in terms of teaching, acquiring renowned lecturers with an industry background and working in production teams.


660 applicants register for the entrance exam, 68 of which are accepted by the admission board and begin their studies in the academic year 1993/94.

On September 10, the Filmakademie moves into the renovated MATHILDENAREAL CAMPUS encompassing the buildings on Mathildenstraße and Allenstraße as well as the Caligari cinema, which is used for academic purposes in the daytime, whilst in the evenings and on weekends „Kinokult“ operates a public arthouse cinema.

The PROJECT STUDY PROGRAMS are launched in the departments Screenwriting and Dramaturgy, Fiction Film, Documentary Film, Business and Science Film, Advertising Film, Animation and Visual Effects, Film Music and Production and are supervised by the following lecturers: Peter Märthesheimer, Christoph Fromm, Nico Hofmann, Lutz Konermann, Dr. Ebbo Demant, Thomas Schadt, Helga Reidemeister, Clemens Keiffenheim, Volker Schlegel, Thomas Haegele, Cong Su and Bastian Clevé.

BLAUER ENGEL (Blue Angel) café and bistro opens its doors for the first time. It serves as the academy's canteen, but is also open to the public.


In April, the FILMAKADEMIE DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION is founded by Fred Oed, managing director of the Ludwigsburg TC Studios. 

In July, the Filmakademie hosts the first Ludwigsburg Film Festival. European short films are presented in the Caligari cinema, on the sound stages and outdoors under a newly built pavilion roof. With the support of Wuestenrot Foundation, the EUROPEAN SHORT FILM BIENNALE is held on the academy's premises until 2005.

On the initiative of Gisela Meister-Scheufelen, president of the State Trade Department, Professor Albrecht Ade and Professor Thomas Haegele and in cooperation with Haus der Wirtschaft in Stuttgart, the FMX – INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ANIMATION, EFFECTS, GAMES AND TRANSMEDIA is held as part of the 7th International Festival of Animated Film. Today, the FMX is one of the most important international conferences for the presentation of digital media.


During a two-day event in May, the academy's HIGHLIGHTS are presented for the first time to an audience of experts from both broadcasting institutions and media production companies. The "Highlights" have since become a renowned showcase for the Filmakademie’s student productions.


The Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg is now publicly funded by the state budget. Political and administrative responsibility is subsequently transferred from the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts to the Ministry of State.

Klaus Haasis, managing director of the media development department at the Baden-Wuerttemberg Society of Media and Film (MFG), replaces Fred Oed as chairman of the Film Academy Development Association.


The French president Jacques Chirac and the German chancellor Gerhard Schröder announce the founding of a German-French film academy. Discussions on a federal level result in the establishment of the Atelier Ludwigsburg-Paris postgraduate program at the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg and the French film school La Fémis in Paris in 2000.


The ATELIER LUDWIGSBURG-PARIS offers its first inter-university master class. Three symposiums, financed by the Robert Bosch Foundation and featuring top-class lecturers, including Jean-Jacques Annaud (director of "The Name of the Rose"), Professor Dr. Peter Sloterdijk and Professor Regis Débray, are held in co-operation with the German-French Institute in Ludwigsburg.

The Filmakaademie broadens its curriculum with the subject area PRODUCTION DESIGN, offered as a two-year project program. The courses of this new program are held in the new Metropolis building.

Minister-President Erwin Teufel inaugurates the new METROPOLIS facility, which not only accommodates the Atelier Ludwigsburg-Paris and the Filmakademie's library and video library, but also includes the casting office and the production design workshop.

Minister of State Dr. Christoph-E. Palmer awards Professor Albrecht Ade, founder and first artistic director of the academy, the honorary membership of the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg.


Dr. Arthur Hofer succeeds Professor Albrecht Ade as artistic director.

The Filmakademie now offers programs on MONTAGE/EDITING and SERIES PRODUCING - the first German film school to offer specialized courses on television series.


In January, the INSTITUTE OF ANIMATION, VISUAL EFFECTS AND DIGITAL POSTPRODUCTION is established as a mainly independent part of the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg. The Institute led by Professor Thomas Haegele is responsible for the training of all students who focus on the subject area of Animation. This includes various specializations such as Concept & Arts (developing and nurturing ideas), Animation & Effects (implementing ideas through computer animation, 2D cel animation and stop trick, real-time animation and live-action film), Character Animation (animating believable characters, animated short films), Visual Effects (combining real images and computer-generated elements to create believable, photorealistic images) as well as training for Animation/Effects Producers (responsible for budget, timing, realization and workflow in animation/effects projects) and Technical Directors (practical work in film teams, games projects, mobile and web applications, tool development).

The first HOLLYWOOD WORKSHOP LOS ANGELES takes place. This annual workshop, in co-operation with the University of California (UCLA), offers a selected group of students the chance to get to know the American film industry first-hand. These seminars and visits to sets or studios are financed in equal parts by the collecting society VGF (Verwertungsgesellschaft für Nutzungsrechte an Filmwerken mbH) and through scholarships provided by the Baden-Wuerttemberg Foundation.


The programs Series Producing and Montage/Editing, along with other departments, find a new home in the LUBITSCH building. The heart of this new venue is a second sound stage of roughly 400 square meters, especially designed for series productions, but also suitable for events and film presentations.


The two-day seminar WHAT WE WATCH AND WHAT WE WANT is held in cooperation with the Adolf Grimme Academy in Marl. Decision makers from the media industry discuss and inform about what broadcasting stations and production companies expect of film school graduates, their ideas and projects. Until 2009, the seminar takes place annually at the beginning of the academic year in early October.

The City of Ludwigsburg places its historic gatehouses at the disposal of different institutions. On the initiative of Dr. Arthur Hofer and with the support of the Kreissparkasse Ludwigsburg bank and Werbewelt Agency, the Aldinger gatehouse becomes home to the KINDERFILMHAUS LUDWIGSBURG (Children's Film Center) in October 2004. Students of the Filmakademie run the Kinderfilmhaus independently. On weekends, they guide visitors, young and old, through the center and explain by using their own films, drawings, puppets and models how films of different genres work and how they are produced. The tour includes many activities for children.


Professor Thomas Schadt assumes management of the Filmakademie, first as artistic director, from 2007 on as managing director.


Over the course of three years, the state government and the Baden-Wuerttemberg Foundation provide the Filmakademie with financial resources for the purchase of HIGH-DEFINITION VIDEO equipment. HD video soon becomes an additional and comprehensive standard for training, production and postproduction at the academy.

Plans for an Academy of Performing Arts as a co-operation between the Filmakcademie and the Stuttgart Colleges of Arts and Music, become more and more concrete. These plans also include collaborations on a teaching level between the Filmakademie and the Academy of Performing Arts, which is constructed within close proximity of the Filmakademie.

Professor Albrecht Ade succeeds Klaus Haasis as chairman of the Filmakademie Development Association with its now more than 300 members.

The Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg celebrates its 15TH ANNIVERSARY with a great festivity.


With the academic year 2007/2008, the program on business and science film is replaced with the subject area EDUCATION AND SCIENCE FILM. At the same time, a new program on INTERACTIVE MEDIA is launched, which unlike other training programs in this field does not focus on technical innovation alone, but primarily on content development for interactive media formats such as films for mobile phones.

Thanks to generous funding provided by the Baden-Wuerttemberg Foundation's plan for future development, the Filmakademie is able to make significant investments in HD technology. With new equipment and additional training for this new technology, students not only learn – parallel to already existing „traditional“ teaching content – about the theory of digital technology, but also how to put their knowledge into practice.


The newly founded ACADEMY OF PERFORMING ARTS BADEN-WUERTTEMBERG opens its doors on the now jointly used campus, the new AKADEMIEHOF. The two academies begin their co-operation with joint classes and projects.


The Caligari cinema is now equipped with 3D technology. The MURNAU building, home to the Film Music & Sound Design study course, is inaugurated. The course’s curriculum has been broadened, so that in the academic year 2010/11 the subject area of FILM SOUND/SOUND DESIGN is offered for the first time.


The State of Baden-Wuerttemberg honours Professor Jochen Kuhn, head of the Cinematic Experimentation department, with its award for teaching excellence recognizing his extraordinary achievements as a teacher. 

In the wake of the elections in the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg, the new government decides to transfer political and administrative responsibility for the Filmakademie back from the Ministry of State to the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts.

The Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg celebrates its 20TH ANNIVERSARY. At the same time, the Production Design and Film Acting departments celebrate their 10th anniversary.