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Deutsches Filminstitut - DIF


Founded in 1949, the Deutsches Filminstitut – DIF is the oldest cinematic institution in Germany and also one of the country's largest.


Along with the Bundesarchiv/Filmarchiv (Federal Film Archive) and the Stiftung Deutsche Kinemathek (Foundation of the German Cinemathèque), both in Berlin, the DIF in Frankfurt is a full member of the Deutscher Kinematheksverbund (German Federation of Cinémathèques), sharing with the above mentioned organisations the duties of a central German Cinémathèque. The institute is a full member of the Fédération Internationale des Archives du Film (FIAF) and of the Association des Cinémathèques Européenes (ACE).


To collect, process and analyse information on film is one of the main purposes of the DIF. A second purpose is the collection of films, their preservation and, if necessary, restoration in order to bring them back to the screen.


In 2006, the Deutsches Filmmuseum, Frankfurt/Main, merged with the DIF and is now an institution of the latter. Their collaboration had already been well established since 1984, the foundation year of the Filmmuseum. After their fusion, the joint institution is now able to provide an exceptional variety of services and comprehensive expertise in film: from collecting any materials relevant to film history (e.g. film copies, posters, photographs, reviews) to the scientific analysis of these materials and their eventual public presentation in screenings, at festivals and exhibitions, via publications or the Internet.


The DIF is engaged in several educational activities and a new focus was set on media education. In March 2007, the ‘SchulKinoWochen’ (School Cinema Weeks) took place for the first time, inviting all school children nationwide to exchange their morning classroom for the cinema. This Cinema Week will be held annually in the future. Extensive temporary exhibitions are focusing on specific aspects, themes, and relevant persons of film history. Guided tours, film-courses, educational materials, and the ‘Schule des Sehens’ (School of Looking) round off the educational program.


The DIF / Deutsches Filmmuseum is running two cinemas: The award-winning Cinema of the Deutsches Filmmuseum in Frankfurt – showing a multi-faceted program of up to 700 feature and around 400 short films from all regions of the world each year including thematic retrospectives, portraits of directors and actors as well as the series "Classics and Rarities"–, and the Caligari Filmbühne in Wiesbaden, presenting further archival treasures twice a week.


Aside from its functions as research institute, museum and archive, the DIF is also actively engaged in promoting film culture in the scope of several national and international projects.