Germany’s Oscar hopeful wins five major awards in Wroclaw at politically charged ceremony.
Toni Erdmann has been voted the best European film of 2016 at the European Film Awards in Wroclaw.
More than 3,000 members of the European Film Academy - filmmakers from across Europe - voted at this year’s awards ceremony.
Scroll down for full list of winners
The comedy also picked up awards for best European Director (Maren Ade), European Actress (Sandra Hüller), European Actor (Peter Simonischek) and European Screenwriter (Maren Ade).
The top prize for Toni Erdmann marked the first time in the EFAs’ 29-year history that the Best European Film award went to a female director as Maren Ade pointed out on accaccepting the evening’s final statuette with her partners Jonas Dornbach and Janine Jackowski of their production company Komplizen Film.
Swedish comedy drama A Man Called Ove was voted best European comedy, while there were also wins for Fire At Sea, The Happiest Day In The Life Of Olli Maki, My Life As A Zucchini and Land Of Mine, among others.
Three of last night’s winners are in the running to be nominated in the Best Foreign Language Feature Film Oscar: Toni Erdmann, My Life As A Zucchini, and The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki.
The awards ceremony before 1,200 guests in Wroclaw’s new Forum of Music was the most politically charged in the history of the event.
This had been anticipated, in part, following recent changes in the Polish political scene, but events elsewhere in Europe prompted many of the evening’s speakers to call on solidarity against the rise of nationalism and to stand up for the European idea and the preservation of artistic freedom.
Wroclaw’s Mayor Rafal Dutkiewicz set the tone for the evening with his opening address when he declared that “Europe is the future, nationalism is a thing of the past” and suggested that Europe should take a shower to rid itself of the “stinking sweat” of nationalism.
There was also the occasional sideswipe directed by the evening’s master of ceremonies actor Maciej Stuhr at the Polish national government in Warsaw (private Polish channel TVN, and not the national state broadcaster TVP, was handling the live transmission).
European Film Academy President Wim Wenders recalled the late Andrzej Wajda’s “civic and social responsibility” and “clear moral compass” when announcing the posthumous Honorary Award of the EFA President & Board for the filmmaker who had not been afraid to speak out against restrictive, retrograde government policies.
Meanwhile, the EFA’s continuing support for the 40-year-old Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov, who is currently serving a 20-year sentence in a prison camp in eastern Siberia, was highlighted during the ceremony with the appearance on stage of one of the former Pussy Riot members, Maria Vladimirovna Aljoshina, who had herself served two years in a Russian prison for her actions.
Earlier in the day veteran UK director Ken Loach delivered an impassioned speech to EFA delegates calling for a “collective voice” among European industry.
The director’s I, Daniel Blake won the first European University Film Award (EUFA), a collaboration between the EFA and Filmfest Hamburg. Students from 13 European countries came together in Hamburg this week and selected Loach’s film from five nominated titles.
On announcing the winner in Wroclaw, Filmfest director Albert Wiederspiel revealed that the initiative had been so popular that it was likely that universities from no less than 20 countries would be participating next year.
German-Polish Film Fund’s budget increased by 66% as fourth member joins
The Film Awards also provided an opportunity for the Polish Film Institute (PISF) and two German regional funds, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg and Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung (MDM) to announce in Wroclaw that the German-Polish Film Fund will now have the German Federal Film Board (FFA) as a fourth partner, along with an increase in the initiative’s annual budget from €300,000 to €500,000.
As from 2017, the PISF will increase its contribution by €50,000 to €150,000, and the two German funds by €25,000 each to €125,000 to support the production of German-Polish co-productions, while the FFA’s contribution of up to €100,000 will be focused on applications for script development. .
The FFA’s participation in the initiative will now mean that the applications for script development can be accepted from producers throughout Germany rather than be restricted to companies based in the regions under the auspices of Medienboard and MDM.
Backing of up to €70,000 can be awarded for the co-development of a script by a German and Polish producer.
The Film Fund was originally launched as the German-Polish Co-Development Fund in 2005, but broadened its scope from last year with an increased budget to include support for film production as well.
As a rule, the maximum amount allocated for a co-production under this scheme is €150,000, and the backing can be accumulated with other production funding from German or Polish national and regional funds.
The initiative between the two countries has already provided backing for 31 projects, including films by such acclaimed directors as EFA Chairperson Agnieszka Holland (Game Count), Marie Noelle (Marie Curie), Marta Minorowicz (Zud), Robert Schwentke (Der Hauptmann), and Johannes Schmid (the German Film Prize winner Winter Daughter).
Full list of EFA winners:
EUROPEAN FILM 2016
Directed by: Maren Ade
Written by: Maren Ade
Produced by: Janine Jackowski, Jonas Dornbach, Maren Ade, Michel Merkt
EUROPEAN COMEDY 2016
A MAN CALLED OVE (En man som heter Ove)
Directed by: Hannes Holm
Written by: Hannes Holm
Produced by: Annica Bellander Rune, Nicklas Wikström Nicastro
EUROPEAN DISCOVERY 2016 - Prix FIPRESCI
THE HAPPIEST DAY IN THE LIFE OF OLLI MÄKI (HYMYLIEVÄ MIES)
Directed by: Juho Kuosmanen
Written by: Mikko Myllylahti, Juho Kuosmanen
Produced by: Jussi Rantamäki
EUROPEAN DOCUMENTARY 2016
FIRE AT SEA (FUOCOAMMARE)
Written & Directed by: Gianfranco Rosi
Produced by: Donatella Palermo, Gianfranco Rosi, Serge Lalou, Camille Laemle, Roberto Cicutto, Paolo Del Brocco, Martine Saada & Olivier Pere
EUROPEAN ANIMATED FEATURE FILM 2016
MY LIFE AS A ZUCCHINI (MA VIE DE COURGETTE)
Directed by: Claude Barras
Written by: Céline Sciamma
Produced by: Max Karli
EUROPEAN SHORT FILM 2016
9 DAYS - FROM MY WINDOW IN ALEPPO
Directed by: Thomas Vroege, Floor van der Meulen, Issa Touma
Written by: Issa Touma
Produced by: Jos de Putter
EUROPEAN DIRECTOR 2016
for TONI ERDMANN
EUROPEAN ACTRESS 2016
in TONI ERDMANN
EUROPEAN ACTOR 2016
in TONI ERDMANN
EUROPEAN SCREENWRITER 2016
for TONI ERDMANN
EUROPEAN CINEMATOGRAPHER 2016 - Prix CARLO DI PALMA
Camilla Hjelm Knudsen
for LAND OF MINE
EUROPEAN EDITOR 2016
Anne Østerud & Janus Billeskov Jansen
for THE COMMUNE
EUROPEAN PRODUCTION DESIGNER 2016
EUROPEAN COSTUME DESIGNER 2016
for LAND OF MINE
EUROPEAN HAIR & MAKE-UP ARTIST 2016
for LAND OF MINE
EUROPEAN COMPOSER 2016
for THE STUDENT
EUROPEAN SOUND DESIGNER 2016
for 11 MINUTES
EUROPEAN FILM ACADEMY LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
EUROPEAN ACHIEVEMENT IN WORLD CINEMA
EUROPEAN CO-PRODUCTION AWARD 2016 - Prix EURIMAGES
PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD 2016 for Best European Film
BODY / CIAŁO
Directed by: Małgorzata Szumowska
Written by: Małgorzata Szumowska, Michał Englert