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Kotti Express

Kotti Express is a short film written and directed by Amir O. Steklov.

Staring: Yun Huan, Katharina Nesytowa, Alessija Lause and Hüseyin Kahraman.

Kotti Express is looking for a world premiere

Get a screener: aosteklov@gmail.com

"Kotti Express" invites you into the mysterious heart of Kreuzberg, Berlin, where JJ, a new worker at a local kebab joint, stumbles into an extraordinary tale.

When an enigmatic policewoman, Petra, hands her an envelope with an unusual request, JJ's world takes a unexpected turn.

As JJ delves deeper, she uncovers Petra's touching story of grief and obsession, woven with daily rituals centered around Ayran (Turkish yogurt drink). But as secrets unfold, JJ finds herself caught in a swift of events, leading to a dramatic moment that will change everything.

 

Through a blend of intrigue, heart, and the pulsating beats of Berlin's techno scene, "Kotti Express" takes you on a journey of unexpected events and the transformative power of human connection.

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Behind the scenes

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Kotti Express Behind the scenes (1)
Kotti Express Behind the scenes (4)
Kotti Express Behind the scenes (2)

Director's Statement

My inspiration for making this film stems from several sources, with one being Yun Huang. Ever since I met her, I have been eager to write a screenplay that showcases her unique, positive, and intricate personality and complex life story as a global citizen, as well as her impressive talent and experience as an actress. For a significant period of time, I have been searching for the right story, until I was reminded of one of my all-time favorite films.


I first watched Chungking Express, the 1994 masterpiece by Wong Kar Wai, together with my ex-partner, who originally came from Chungking, China. As our relationship became increasingly abusive, it culminated in an excruciating break-up. I have lived through all that as a newly arrived expat in the melting pot of Kreuzberg, Berlin, hustling my way through its intensity, possibilities, anonymity, alienation, which makes the process both easier and impossibly hard at the same time. I then visited the filming location of Wong's film, Chungking Mansions, a bustling place situated in the heart of Hong Kong, full of diverse immigrant cultures, halal foods, and cheap goods. It felt just like my Kreuzberg! One day, from my Kreuzberg balcony, I was watching the familiar kebab shop next to the locksmith's store across the street. That is when my experiences of Hong Kong, my bittersweet memories of my first years in Berlin and of Chungking Express, and my new friend Yun all began to merge and grow into this screenplay: Kotti Express!


In terms of the style and narrative structure, there will be echoes of Wong‘s film. Lots of handheld cinematography and extensive improvisation. But rather than merely paying homage, I want to use this quirky, strange story to explore the burning questions of our generation: Those about isolation, about connection happening in the most unlikely of ways, about worlds coexisting without ever touching, until there is the willingness and courage to cross the line, to burst the bubble, and the transformative power that arises from that.
 

I aim to have a significant number of the crew members from the Hong Kong community in Berlin. While telling the story of all people searching for belonging, I hope this film will serve as a voice especially for Hong Kongers living in exile, by bringing this iconic piece of Hong Kong cinema into the very specific back drop of contemporary Berlin, which has become a haven for so many refugees, nomads, free spirits and untamed voices from the entire world.

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