Major stars, devoted fans, emotional moments: The 68th BAMBI ceremony took place in Berlin on 17 November in the Stage Theater, Potsdamer Platz. Winners of Germany’s most important media award included Pope Francis, popstar Robbie Williams and footballer Bastian Schweinsteiger. The audience was particularly moved by the story of Yusra and Sarah Mardini, who received the “Unsung heroes” award after saving a group of fellow refugees.
There was also a surprise for Bastian Schweinsteiger as his childhood friend, ski racer Felix Neureuther, gave a speech to accompany his award. The jury chose the footballer for their special award in honour of his unique career with all its ups and downs. There were standing ovations for Saba Douglas-Hamilton and Frank Pole, who received the “Our earth” award for their tireless work with the animal welfare organisation “Save the elephants”.
Actor Oliver Masucci gave a particularly haunting acceptance speech as he and Fabian Busch accepted the BAMBI for the best German film for “Er ist wieder da” (Look who’s back). He pointed out that, as right-wing populist parties gain increasing strength in Europe, the film is more relevant than ever. Sting gave a moving tribute – in German – to Udo Lindenberg, who received the BAMBI for German music. “You have given new meaning to the concept of youth culture. The secret is to stay young at heart”, he said of the 70-year-old.
The BAMBI statue also took its first trip to the Vatican: Former German President Horst Köhler praised Pope Francis – who had been presented with the Millennium BAMBI in Rome in advance of the ceremony – for his unwavering charity.
Sisters Yusra and Sarah Mardini were named unsung heroes for their courage after they swam beside a refugee boat to keep it afloat, saving 18 lives. The “Our Olympic heroes” people’s choice award went to gymnast Andreas Toba, who showed extraordinary team spirit and force of will at the Olympic Games.
Hundreds of fans waiting outside the Stage Theater gave the arriving stars an enthusiastic welcome. There were particularly loud cheers for Robbie Williams, German actors Matthias Schweighöfer and Florian David Fitz, DJ Felix Jaehn and Bastian Schweinsteiger, who attended with his wife Ana Ivanovic. The stars spent plenty of time talking to their fans, who packed out the large fan area on Marlene-Dietrich-Platz.
The ceremony included performances from Sting, Zara Larsson, Robbie Williams – who presented two hits from his new album – international DJ Felix Jaehn and veteran rocker Udo Lindenberg, who was accompanied by the German Film Orchestra Babelsberg.
WINNERS AND PRESENTERS
|Comedy||Bülent Ceylan||Thomas Hermanns|
|Special jury award||Bastian Schweinsteiger||Felix Neureuther|
|Entertainment||Felix Jaehn||speech by Palina Rojinski, presented by Miss BAMBI|
|Television||Florian Silbereisen||Mareile Höppner|
|German Film||“Er ist wieder da” (Look who’s back)||Michael Brandner|
|Integration||Joachim Löw||Winfried Kretschmann|
|Lifetime achievement||Mario Adorf||Axel Milberg|
|Millennium||Papst Franziskus||Horst Köhler|
|International music||Robbie Williams||Thomas Gottschalk|
|Music National||Udo Lindenberg||Sting|
|“Our Olympic heroes” people’s choice||Andreas Toba||Alexander Bommes|
|German actor||Devid Striesow||Bettina Zimmermann and Kai Wiesinger|
|German actoress||Anna Maria Mühe||Bettina Zimmermann and Kai Wiesinger|
|Sport||Angelique Kerber||Kai Plaume|
|Unsung heroes||Yusra and Sarah Mardini||Anja Reschke|
|Our earth||“Save the Elephants” Saba Douglas-Hamilton, Frank Pope||Judith Rakers|