Milen Vitanov - Director

Born 1978 in Prague and raised in Sofia, Milen graduated in Animation from the University of Film and Television HFF "Konrad Wolf" in Potsdam-Babelsberg in 2007. His graduation short "My Happy End" has participated in many international festival and received numerous prestigious awards. Together with a group of fellow HFF-graduates and friends he co-founded the Talking Animals Animation Studio in Berlin. [Link]
(Foto: Monique Ulrich)

Dennis Rettkowski - Rigging, Rendering, R&D, FX

Dennis Rettkowski has over 10 years of working experience as VFX supervisor and graphics software developer and is currently working at Berlin based Talking Animals as a producer and technical director for animated films. [Link]
(Foto: Monique Ulrich)

Lars Krüger - Animation

During their studies of animation Lars Krüger and Milen shared a working room at the time when the idea to Rising Hope first arose. Lars liked the idea from the first draft of the script. Today he works as a freelance character animator based in Berlin Kreuzberg. [Link]

Michael Herm - Animation

Freelance animator, director, 3D artist. Studied animation at the University of Film and Television HFF "Konrad Wolf" and later found animation to be a good way to distract himself from contemplating on the meaning of life. [Link]
(Foto: Monique Ulrich)

Nikolai Neumetzler - Animator

Born on August 23rd 1981 in Berlin Germany, Nik studied "Kommunikation-Design" at the Niederrhein University of Applied Science in Krefeld until Prediploma in 2004. Since 2004 he studied Animation at the Film and Television Academy (HFF) "Konrad Wolf" where he reached the Prediploma with his film "Ein Traum" in 2007. He finished studying with the Diploma making the shortfilm "Lokomoschine" in 2010. Since then he worked as lecturer for animation at the Bauhaus University in Weimar and is working freelance as character-animator in Berlin. [Link]

Martin Freitag - Animation

Martin Freitag is working as a professional in 3D animation since 2004. Starting as animator he quickly made his way up, working as senior and lead animator on Full CG Features. His not only artistic but also technical talent made him rigging TD, rigging supervisor, and animation TD as well. Today he is working as CGI supervisor and pipeline developer and still tries to keep the balance between the technical and the artistic part of his soul - which makes him always happy, talking to animals..

Olaf Aue - Director of Photography

After serving his apprenticeship as an advertising photographer in Hamburg, he graduated in Aesthetic Communication and Cultural Sciences in Hildesheim. He is a guest lecturer on Digital Cinematography, HD and Digital Cinema at the DFFB (German Film and Television Academy Berlin) and the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences. With nearly 20 years of professional experience in cinematography, he keeps on exploring different conceptions. Rising Hope is the second animated stereoscopic 3D movie on which he has worked after "Flamingo Pride" (director: Tomer Eshed), awarded in SIGGRAPH and Animago last year. [Link]

Vera Trajanova - Script

Bulgarian scriptwriter, freelance writer and journalist from Russian descent, based in Berlin. She holds a BA in History from the Humboldt University of Berlin, and is currently studying Screenplay Writing at the University for Film and Television HFF "Konrad Wolf" in Potsdam. Her articles have appeared in major magazines and newspapers in Bulgaria.[Link]

Jan Schneider - Set Design

He graduated in Graphic Design at the University of Applied Sciences in Munich (1996), worked for a number of years as a freelance set designer for computer games, and then graduated from the University for Film and Television HFF "Konrad Wolf" in Production Design (2009), where he specialised in digital image processing, set extension, 3D modelling and VFX. He currently lectures at the same university in the Faculty of Production Design. [Link]

Jens Prausnitz - Editor

Jens Prausnitz is a passionate filmmaker and editor. He is working since 10 years professionally for Polish Television (TVP, MTV, Kino Polska), advertising agencies (DDB, Saatchi, TBWA, Leo Burnett), and edited several short, and one German feature film. In 2007 he was nominated for a Cannes Lion with the spot "Homeless" in the category "Public Awareness". [Link]
(Foto: Olaf Aue)

Martin Reimers - Editor

Martin Reimers studied Editing at the Film and Television University "Konrad Wolf" in Potsdam-Babelsberg. Lives and works in Berlin.

Michał Krajzcok - Sound Designer

Michał was born in Poland and emigrated with his family to Germany at the age of 10. From the fascination of grandpa's piano over experiments in classical, rock and jazz music, he developed his passion towards music and further on towards sound for film. He moved to Berlin to study Sound Engineering at the HFF "Konrad Wolf" in 2003, working on projects such as "Cocoon Child" and "The Tell-Tale Heart" as well as several live action films. [Link]
(Foto: Monique Ulrich)

Felix Freese - Voice talent

Felix took part in several theatre- and theatre youth club productions, as well as off theatre projects. Since 2009 he is studying Acting at the University for Film and Television HFF "Konrad Wolf" and has since then worked on internal projects. He played in "Mittagshitze" (director: Moritz Richard Schmidt) and "Die Nacht singt ihre Lieder" (director: Peter Hecker). Theatre projects: "Amadeus", "Mit dem Feuer spielen", "Kabale und Liebe", "Die Passionsspiele", "Die Räuber".

Stefan Maria Schneider - Music

Stefan Maria Schneider studied Composition at University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna, Media Composition at Academy of Music "Hanns Eisler", Berlin, and Film Music at Academy for Film and Television "Konrad Wolf", Potsdam-Babelsberg. Stefan wrote music for the directing debut of German actress Franka Potente of "Run Lola Run" fame. He worked for the British composer John Powell ("Face Off", "Bourne Identity", "Ice Age") and co-orchestrated Powell's Academy Award nominated soundtrack for "How To Train Your Dragon". [Link]

Marian Mentrup - Music and Sound Re-Recording Mix

Specialized in sound design and music production for film and new media. Besides that he also worked as a re-recording mixer on more than 30 short and long films from 16 mm mono up to stereoscopic 3D films with Dolby EX. His work has been heard on film festivals like Cannes, Berlinale, the BAFTAs in London, in Los Angeles, Toronto and many more and has won several awards. Currently he is working as a freelancer in London and Berlin. [Link]

Additional Crew

Character Animation: Stefan Klauss
Additional Animation: Monira Kamal, Stefanie Schmiedel and Maxim Vassiliev
Modeling: Dennis Rettkowski, Michael Herm, Jan Koester
Trailer Concept & Editing: Jens Prausnitz
Graphic Design & Typography: Stefan Müssigbrodt
Graphic Design (Rising Hope Magazine Covers): Sabine Loos
Voices – Rising Hope: Sebastian Schulz and Felix Freese
Voices – Additional Horses: Nourfa, Loonita, Malaysia and
Horses from Hoppegarten, Berlin
Horse Supervisor: Regina Porrmann, Tomasz Mielnik
Additional Voices: Ines Ferreira, Sonja Rohleder, Gregor Dashuber,
Veronika Samartseva, Annette Jung and  Jan Koester
Foley Artist: Peter Roigk
Foley Editing: Hannes Schulze
Music performed by: Brandenburgisches Staatsorchester Frankfurt
Music Mixer: Stefan Haberfeld
Fundraising: Vera Trajanova
Webdesign: Stefan Müssigbrodt
Web Programming: Mihail Borissov