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FESTIVALS Spain

Son of Babylon triumphs at Seville

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It may seem like a contradiction for an Iraqi director to win the top prize at a festival dedicated to European cinema, but it only underscores European producers’ great ability to join forces to bring to fruition films not just from our continent, but from across the world. At the 10th Seville European Film Festival, the Golden Giraldillo was thus awarded to Mohamed Al-Daradji’s Son of Babylon [+see also:
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film profile
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, produced by companies from the UK, Holland and France, in co-production with Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Palestine.

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The prize is worth €45,000, which will go towards the film’s Spanish distribution. Al-Daradji’s second feature was made with financing from the UK’s Human Film, Screen Yorkshire and UK Film Council and Holland’s Netherlands Film Fund and Rotterdam Film Fund. Before gracing the Seville fest, the film –sold internationally by France’s Roissy Films – screened in the Berlinale Panorama and at the Edinburgh festival.

Denmark’s Susanne Bier once again took home double honours for In a Better World [+see also:
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, as she did at Rome (see news). At Seville, she nabbed Best Director and Best Screenplay, the latter shared with Anders Thomas Jensen.

Two of this year’s most outstanding productions received accolades: Vardis Marinakis’s Greek title Black Field [+see also:
film review
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interview: Vardis Marinakis
film profile
]
took the Silver Giraldillo; and Kornél Mundruczó’s Hungarian film Tender Son – The Frankenstein Project [+see also:
film review
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film profile
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claimed the Special Jury Prize. Special Mentions were awarded to Mijke de Jong’s Dutch title Joy [+see also:
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and Pedro Aguilera’s Spanish work Shipwreck.

In the acting categories, Best Actress was shared by Samira Maas (for Joy) and Sofia Georgovassili (for Black Field), while Best Actor went to Rhys Ifans (for Mr. Nice).

Finally, the Grand Audience Award, vying for which were the shortlisted titles for the forthcoming European Film Academy Awards, was handed to Stephen Frears’s UK title Tamara Drewe [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Stephen Frears
film profile
]
. Meanwhile, the Eurimages Award, for any production financed by the European organisation, went to Renato De Maria’s Italian film The Front Line [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Luc & Jean-Pierre Dardenne
interview: Renato De Maria
film profile
]
.

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(Translated from Spanish)

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