German film from director Ramon Zürcher wins the top prize at the Copenhagen International Film Festival.

The Stange Little Cat (Das Merkwürdige Kätzchen), the feature debut of Ramon Zürcher, has won the top prize at CPH PIX.

The Swiss director, now based in Berlin, received the €15,000 ($20,000) New Talent Grand PIX at a PIX Award brunch in Copenhagen’s Julian Restaurant today [Apr 19].

A Forum entry at the Berlinale, scripted by Zürcher and produced by the German Film and Television Academy Berlin (where he was educated), the film follows three generations of a middle-class family and a ginger cat gathering at a small apartment in Berlin before dinner, launching a chain reaction of events.

A statement from the jury said: “We spent a half hour in a strange person’s kitchen - a setting we all know – and we watched the mystery of  trivial everyday life through the magnifying glass of film art. So real it became universal.”

The jury comprises Icelandic director Ragnar Bragason, Brazilian director Kleber Mendonça Filho and Canadian film curator Agnès Wildenstein.

The Broken Circle Breakdown, from Belgian director Felix Van Groeningen, won the Politiken Audience Award.

The drama - a love story between a religious realist and a romantic atheist, which is tested when their daughter is diagnosed with a terminal illness - previously won the Panorama Audience Award in Berlin.

The CPH PIX-Copenhagen International Film Festival runs until April 24 and includes 400 screenings of 160 films at eight Copenhagen cinemas and numerous other venues, adding the Øst for Paradis theatre in Aarhus.