The award for “best amateur film maker of 2014” was made at the end of November in Mönchengladbach at an event run by the film club "Mönchengladbach Lens". Throughout the last year, filmmakers in Germany were observed at national and international film competitions by a specialist jury. This expert team recommended to the organiser, who among Germany’s best gold medal winners is the top film maker. This year for the first time, the large jury chose the Passau filmmaker Anton Wallner.
In 2014 Anton Wallner not only won the highest Bavarian award for amateur filmmakers - the Bavarian Film Award, a”Llion” - with his film "A Paradise, called Namib" but also received several special awards for best cinematography and best film design. These numerous gold medals came from home and abroad. Probably one of the most coveted prizes was the "Golden Diana" at Klopein am See, because Wallner had to compete not only with "amateurs", but also with professionals and even here he won both a Golden Diana and the special prize for best cinematography.
The video "A Paradise, called Namib" was shown with films by three other authors at the end of November 2014 in the "Carl-Orff-Saal" of the city of Mönchengladbach. In the impressive setting of the great hall, filled to the last seat, it was a very special experience for Wallner. The musical entertainment created by the Mönchengladbach Music Group "Pink Fluid", was followed by speeches from the organiser, Mr Gerhard Comelli.
The Lord Mayor of the city of Mönchengladbach, Mr. Hans Wilhelm Reiners, acted as master-of-ceremonies for the successful film makers and effusively introduced the authors’ films. So the mayor declared, among other things, that Anton Wallner was certainly the best ambassador for the city of Passau, because he and his films act as a very good advertisement for the city of three rivers, especially thanks to his attendance at events at home and abroad. What could be better than to have a cinematic ambassador, asked the mayor.
Mayor Reiners had been well informed about the achievements of the man from Passau. "Anton Wallner is probably the most successful film maker in Bavaria" according to Mr. Reiners "he was known as a successful filmmaker, not only in Germany but also across the borders of Europe." He reported on the successes of the past year and thereby painted a picture of the ambassador’s work for the city of Passau.
Anton Wallner, who travelled to Mönchengladbach in Bavarian dress, gave a special welcome gift to the organisers and the Mayor of a small "survival package" - wheat beer, white sausages and white sausage mustard. This surprised the large audience as much as the author’s previously announced film. Prolonged and passionate applause were the Passau director’s reward. The author thanked the audience and said that he wants to shoot his new project before Christmas. This time about the people in Khao Lak, -Thailand- who suffered the terrible fate of the tsunami exactly 10 years ago. Wallner wants to empathize with the situation of the survivors and work up the drama of the terrible event. This will be the theme of the film "Back to Life”.
For Anton Wallner 2014 was certainly the most successful film year. He brought back to the city of three rivers many national and international prizes, especially with the "A Paradise called Namib". The film maker said that, unfortunately, he was one of the last in Passau who successfully participate in national and international film festivals. But he said in an interview: "Hope dies last".