Films from as far afield as Mauritania, Thailand and Belgium took home the top prizes at the Buenos Aires Fifth International Film Festival of Independent Cinema.

Mauritania's Waiting For Happiness by director Abderrahmane Sissako won best picture while director Apichatpong Weerasethakul of Thailand's Blissfully Yours was named best director.

In a year that recognised upcoming female directors Argentina's Celina Murga won the special jury prize for Ana Y Los Otros and Albertina Carri took the special mention for her docu/fiction essay about the disappearance of her parents, Los Rubios.

The best actress award went to Severine Caneele for her performance in Une Part Du Ciel, by Benedicte Lienard while the best actor award went to Alejandro Ferretis for his lead role in Carlos Reygadas' Japon (Mexico).

The Lo Nuevo de lo Nuevo prize, destined for new Argentinean films, went to Carri's Los Rubios and Santiago Loza's Extrano.

For the first time, the European Film Promotion (EFP) collaborated with the festival to introduce works from upcoming European directors. These included Be My Star (dir:Valeska Grisebach, Austria/Germany); Hukkle (dir:Gyorgy Palfi, Hungary); L' Imbalsamatore (dir:Matteo Garrone, Italy); Une Part Du Ciel (dir:Lienard, Belgium/France) and Poligono Sur (dir:Dominique Abel,Spain/France).