Scroll down for full list of winners
Jens Assur’s Ravens (Korparna) has been named best film at the 58th Thessaloniki International Film Festival (Nov 2-12), winning the Theo Angelopoulos Golden Alexander award, which comes with a purse of €8,000.
Set in Sweden in the 1970s, the film deals with the efforts of a farmer to save his land. Leading actor Reine Brynolfsson was named the festival’s best actor. World sales on the title are handled by Celluloid Dreams.
The five-member international jury, including Palestinian filmmaker Annemarie Jacir and Karlovy Vary artistic director Karel Och, bestowed the Special Jury prize, the Silver Alexander, on the Iranian drama No Date, No Signature (Bedoune Tarikh, Bedoune Emza) directed by Vahid Jalilvand.
The screenplay, co-written by Jalilvand, deals with the professional and personal ethics of a doctor who gets involved in a car accident which results in the death of a child.
The film also received the Fipresci award at Thessaloniki. World Sales are handled by Noori Pictures and Greek distributor Seven Films picked up the title after the awards ceremony.
Iceland’s Hlynur Palmason received the Best Director Bronze Alexander prize for the Danish-Icelandic coproduction Winter Brothers (Vinterbrodre).
The screenplay, written by Palmason, deals with the problematic relationship between two brothers working in a limestone factory in a small Danish village.
The film is sold internationally by New Europe Film Sales and was acquired for distribution in Greece by StraDa Films.
The Belgian, Dutch, French coproduction Cargo, directed by Gilles Coulier, received the best screenplay award. Co-written by Coulier and Tom Dupont, the screenplay deals with three brothers trying to cope with their personal and financial problems and save their fishing boat from sale.
Darya Zhovar was named best actress for her performance in Closeness (Tesnota) directed by Russian Kantemir Balagov. World sales are handled by Wild Bunch and the film was acquired by Seven Films for theatrical distribution in Greece.
A special mention from the jury went to the late Harry Dean Stanton for his performance in Lucky, his last film before passing away, which was directed by US actor John Carroll Lynch. Sold by Magnolia Pictures, the film was acquired for Greece by Filmtrade.
Bloodless by Corean Gina Kim was awarded Best Film (with a purse of €3,000) by a separate international jury in a 10 films-strong new section dedicated to VR films.
Tributes and retrospectives included those to Ruben Ostlund (Square) and Ildiko Eynedi (On Body And Soul).
Elsewhere, The Agora Industry awards saw the €50,000 Eurimages Lab Award go to the Serbian-Croatian co-production Speak So I Can See You by Marija Stojnic.
Greek industry health
The impressive number of Greek productions in the festival – more than 30 features - was arguably tarnished by controversy between the public Greek TV ERT, the Greek Film Centre and the local unions, which was made public during the traditional ERT conference held at the festival.
The filmmakers challenged the institutions over a series of recent measures that have put in doubt the future of financial backing for local productions.
Full list of awards:
International jury awards
Golden Alexander: Theo Angelopoulos award to the best film - Ravens (Korparna) by Jens Assur (Sweden)
Silver Alexander: Special jury award - No date, No Signature (Bedoune Tarikh, Bedoune Emza) by Vahid Jalilvand (Iran)
Bronze Alexander: Special jury award for Best director - Hlynur Palmason for Winter Brothers (Vinterbrodre) (Denmark/Iceland)
Best Screenplay - Gilles Coulier and Tom Dupont for Cargo by Gilles Coulier (Belgium, Netherlands, France)
Best actress - Darya Zhovar in Closeness (Tesnota) by Kantemir Balagov (Russia)
Best actor - Reine Brynolfsson in Ravens (Korparna) by Jens Assur (Sweden).
To the late Harry Dean Stanton for his performance in Lucky by John Carroll Lynch (USA)
To the sound design of Ravens (Korparna) by Jens Assur (Sweden)
Virtual reality films international section
Best film - Bloodless by Gina Kim (South Korea)
Special mention - Notes on Blindness by James Spinney and Peter Middleton (France, UK)
Film in the international competition - No Date No Signature (Bedoune Tarikh, Bedoune Emza) by Vahid Jalilvand (Iran)
Special mention to, Winter Brothers (Vinterbrodre) by Hlynur Palmason (Denmark, Iceland)
Film in the Greek Film Festival section - Too Much Info Clouding Over My Head by Vassilis Christofilakis
Greek film Critics (PEKK) - Rosemarie by Adonis Florides (Cyprus)
Audience awards (Fischer)
Foreign film in competition - Lucky by John Carroll Lynch (USA)
Greek film-Michael Cacoyiannis award (Greek Film Festival section) - Timeless Stories (Istories Horis Hrono) by Vassilis Raisis
Open Horizons section - Insyriated by Philippe van Leeuw (Belgium, France, Lebanon)
Balkan Survey sectio - Secret Ingredient by Gjorce Stavreski (Fyrom, Greece)
Human values award by the Greek Parliament TV channel - Closeness (Tesnota) by Kantemir Balagov (Russia)
ERT Public TV awards (Greek Film festival section)
1st Award - Thorn (Agathi) by Gabriel Tzafkas (Greece, Denmark)
2nd Award - Too Much Info Clouding Over My Head by Vassilis Christofilakis
Greek Film Center award - Too Much Info Clouding Over My Head by Vassilis Christofilakis
YOUTH Jury (Greek Film Festival section)
Best Feature Film Award - Polyxeni by Dora Masklavanou
Special Jury Award - Do It Yourself by Dimitris Tsilifonis
Cross Roads co-production Forum
The2/35 co-production award to the project, Margherita, director Valentina Carnelutti, producers Marco Alessi - Dugong Films & Valentina Carnelutti - Fioere Leonen Produzioni, Italy
CNC Development award - 200 meters, director Ameen Nayfeh, producer May Odeh - Odeh Films, Palestine.
MuSou Award - Zuha, director Nazlύ Elif Durlu, Producer Anna Maria Aslanoğlu - Istos film, Turkey
Heretic Asterisk award to the project - Rainbows don’t Last Long, director Mayye Zayed, producers Mayye Zayed – Rufy’s Films, Halina Dyrschka – Ambrosia Film, Egypt, Germany
Mediterranean Film Institute (MFI) award to the projects,
200 meters, director Ameen Nayfeh, producer May Odeh - Odeh Films, Palestine
Rainbows don’t Last Long, director Mayye Zayed, producers Mayye Zayed – Rufy’s Films, Halina Dyrschka – Ambrosia Film, Egypt, Germany
Initiative Film award - We Kiss in the Darks, director Daphné Hérétakis, producers Jasmina Sijercic - Bocalupo Flms, Yorgos Tsourgiannis - Horsefly Productions, France, Greece
Works in Progress
GRAAL co-production award to the film, Sister, directer Svetla Tsotsorkova, producers Svetoslav Ovcharov – Omega Films, Vetla Tsotsorkova– Front Film, Bulgaria
Eurimages Lab Project Award to the film, Speak So I San See You, director Marija Stojnic, producers Marija Stojnic, Milos Ivanovic- Bilboke, Tibor Keser, Vanja Jambrovic – Restart, Serbia, Croatia.