Paul Gross’ WWI epicPasschendaeletook six awards, including best picture, as the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television announced the 2009 Genie Award winners in Ottawa on Saturday.
The film, which premiered at Toronto in 2008, also won the prizes for art direction, costume design, sound editing and overall sound. It was also presented with the Golden Reel Award as the highest-grossing Canadian film of the year, with C$4.4m ($3.6m).
Benoit Pilon’s The Necessities of Life (Ce qu’il faut pour vivre), the most nominated film with eight, took four major prizes, earning best direction for Pilon, best actor for lead Natar Ungalaaq, original screenplay for Bernard ɭond as well as best editing for Richard Comeau. The film, which premiered at the Montreal World Film Festival in August, was Canada’s submission for the foreign-language Academy Award. Best adapted screenplay went to Marie-Sissi Labreche and Lyne Charlebois for Borderline.
US actress Ellen Burstyn won Best Actress for her role in The Stone Angel while Kristin Booth took the supporting actress prize for Young People Fucking. Callum Ketih Rennie won supporting actor for Carl Bessai’s Normal; it was Rennie’s second win in the category. The Stone Angel also won for best original score while best original song went to Dr. Shiva for ‘Rahi Nagufta’ from Amal.
The cinematography prize went to Gregory Middleton for Jeremy Podeswa’s Fugitive Pieces.
As previously announced Yves-Christian Fournier won the Claude Jutra Award for best debut film with Everything Is Fine (Tout Est Parfait).
Best Documentary went to Yung Chang’s Up The Yangtze while Denis Villeneuve’s Next Floorearned the the prize for Best Live Action Short Drama. The animated short prize went to Claude Cloutier and Marcel Jean for Sleeping Betty.