Marija, a young Ukrainian woman, earns her living as a hotel maid in Dortmund (Germany), but dreams of owning her own hair salon. She puts money aside each month but when she is fired without notice, her dream seems out of reach. Jobless and under financial pressure, she finds herself forced to look for other opportunities. Willing to reach her goal, her body her social relationships and her own feelings take a secondary importance.

Original title: Marija  English title: Marija Country: Germany, Switzerland Production year: 2016 Format: DCP 2K Son: 5.1 Length: 101' Aspect ratio: 1:1.85 Frame rate: 24fps




Margarita Breitkreuz, Georg Friedrich, Olga Dinnikova, Sahin Eryilmaz


Director: Michael Koch Assistant director: Roger Schweizer Screenwriters:  Michael Koch Producers: Claudia Steffen, Christoph Firedel Production: Pandora Film Co-Producers: Christof Neracher, Tom Spiess Co-Production Companies: Hugofilm, Little Shark World sales: Luxbox, DOP: Bernhard Keller Art Director: Petra Barchi Costume design: Peri de Braganca Editors: Florian Riegel Sound: Jean-Pierre Gerth Sound design: Tobias Koch, Maurizius Staerkle-Drux 


Premiers Plans Angers 2016 - BEST ACTOR & BEST ACTRESS 

Mons Love International Film Festival 2016 - JURY PRIZE & BEST ACTRESS



Director/ Screenwriter 

Born 1982 in Lucerne (Switzerland), Michael Koch studied from 2003–2008 at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne and also worked as an actor. During this time he made the following short films: We Are The Faithful (2005), Poolside (2006) and Polar (2008). All three films were very successful at international festivals and won numerous awards. Polar received a Special Mention at the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival and the German Camera Award as well as the German Short Film Award 2009. After his studies he worked as a director for the theater Kaserne Basel. Michael Koch celebrates the world premiere of his feature film debut Marija in International Competition at the Locarno Film Festival.



2005, Wir sind dir treu (We are the faithful) | Doc Short Film

Best Swiss Film / Winterthur Intl. Short Film Festival 2005— Le prix Canal+ / Festival international du court m.trage de Clermont-Ferrand 2006 — Audience Award / Documenta Madrid 2006 — Silver Impakt Award / Impakt 2006 — Best Documentary Film & ARTE Short Film Prize / Munich Intl. Festival of Film Schools

2006, Beckenrand | Short Film

— Premiere, Locarno Intl. Film Festival 2006 — Nomination Swiss Film Prize 2007 — Prix sp.cial du jury / Festival du film court de Lille 2007 — Special Mention / Hamburg Intl. Short Film Festival 2007 — Nomination German Short Film Award 2007

2008, Polar | Short Film

— Premiere and Special Mention / 59. Berlin Intl. Film Festival, Perspektive Deutsches Kino — Best Swiss Film / Winterthur Intl. Short Film Festival 2008 — Golden Horseman / Best German Film, Filmiest Dresden — German Camera Award 2009 / Category Short Film — Nomination FIRST STEPS 2009 / Category Best Feature Film and Best Screenplay — Nomination Babelsberger Media Prize 2009 / Category Best Graduation Film – Feature Film — Certificate “Especially Valuable” / Filmbewertungsstelle Wiesbaden 2009 — German Short Film Award Winner 2009 / Category Best Feature Film 7–30 min.