A cinematic search

FINDING EUROPE is a cinematic search for the desirable and possible future of the European Union.

The European house was once built by heads of state and governments and was initially primarily an economic project in the interest of a peace order. It was not the European people who demanded and fought for Europe, but they rather moved in the Union like tenants in a house that others built for them. Today, the European house is in need of renovation. Nationalists and separatists threaten it. Britain will leave the EU. People in other countries and regions are also campaigning for the exit.

Why is that? Why are the centrifugal forces getting stronger? Are people’s needs and interests neglected? Do people feel alien in this house or do they lack identification with the European idea? Do material circumstances and social equality ultimately determine whether Europeans want to identify with “their” Union? And what would a European house look like that would be modernized by its residents themselves? What should a united Europe of the future look like that can even convince its doubters?

With our participatory film project “Finding Europe” on behalf of the Goethe Institute and other partners we want to bring together mainly “ordinary” people, who come neither from public nor from professional life, between 16 and 99 years from at least six European countries. With us the winegrower from Italy meets the cinema operator from Great Britain and the assembly line worker from Germany and the librarian from Poland meet the kindergarten teacher from France. The participants will go on a filmic search for the possible future of Europe.

The development of the film project will also write on the story of the “Freiraum” project by the Goethe-Institut. Here protagonists from civil society, science and culture were found here and could get in touch and discuss the term “freedom” with one another and exchange creative ideas and solutions. With the film project “Finding Europe” we want to go a few steps further. The protagonists will not only react to each other. They will actually get to know each other, develop questions together and conduct interviews. Together they will go in search of the small but so important stories of the “little” people from different nations. They will ask about hopes and visions and fears. Like a puzzle, all of these small fragments, different perspectives and opposing opinions will result in an overall media picture that tells the mood in Europe apart from the media hegemony of politics and business and thus will help to find a Europe of the future that could actually enthrall the European people.

Partners for a participatory approach

FINDING EUROPE is a joint project by Studio Kalliope and the Kameradisten.org, is being carried out on behalf of the Goethe Institute and is open to other partners who help to expand the scope of the project.

FINDING EUROPE will lead to a documentary for the cinema. However, secondary works for TV and the web are also aimed for.

Filming began in Greece in July 2020. At least five other EU member states are to follow. It would be desirable to include other countries and also those states that have either left the EU (GB) or are still striving to join it (e.g. Serbia or Albania).

Studio Kalliope (production) was founded in 2015 by Maria Kling and Marc-Uwe Kling and has been working for the RBB (Bühne 36) and the GIZ (Pacific Voice in Unison) and produced the documentaries “Por los Camiones del Sur” and “One Word”.

The Kameradisten.org (executive production) are a group of filmmakers who have been developing participatory documentaries for the cinema since 2012. After “Sachamanta” and “No Rest. No Haste.” they realized the documentary “One Word” together with Studio Kalliope on the impacts of climate change on the Republic of the Marshall Islands and its people. (German Release: November 5, 2020).

Participatory documentary work is the strong involvement of cinematic laypeople in the production and post-production of a documentary film. The purpose of this approach is the dissolution of traditional role relationships and the creation of increased authenticity and credibility.


You can follow the progress of the work on the film blog. Filming began in Hanoitis (Greece) in July 2020.