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Film Critics Update: Today, January 14 - Winners from Denver FCS.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

1st Audentia Award Winner

Yesterday at the 35th Istanbul Film Festival the jury of the 1st Audentia Award, Yeşim Ustaoğlu, director Angelos Frantzis, and Sanja Ravlic from the Eurimages, announced the winner and is none other than a puzzling animated documentary.

Anca Damian with her film La Montagne Magique

To check announcement at festival official site go here.

The now award winner film has the following storyline:
In the form of an animated docu-drama, the biography of Adam Jacek Winkler wonders through nearly half a century of history. A Polish refugee in Paris, Adam lived a boundless life, wanting to change the world. His adventurous life takes a radical turn in the 80s, as he visions himself a knight of the 20th century and leaves France to fight with both amateurism and courage, alongside commander Massoud against the Soviets in Afghanistan. In the light of September 11th, 2001, his fate mirrors the individual's destiny in relation with the history unfolding and also the introspection of a man on his own fate.


Recently a new annual award was created by the Council of Europe's Eurimages Fund and most interesting, is an award that will be given to female directors. The name: Audentia, which is Latin for courage or bravery; two words that according to awards creators "reflects two vital qualities for any woman wishing to pursue a career in film directing".

With the Audentia Award Eurimages intends to celebrate women who have had the courage to make the filmmaking choice, by giving their work greater visibility and inspiring other women to follow their footsteps. The award, a cash prize of 30,000 euros, has been instigated by Eurimages alongside a raft of other measures to promote greater gender equality in the European film industry.

Each award ceremony will have a patroness and for the first edition the CEO of the Swedish Film Institute, Anna Serner, was chosen for her outstanding courage to advancing the cause of gender equality in the film industry. She is a pioneer who has rendered visible the invisible, and under her leadership, the Swedish Film Institute has achieved parity in the allocation of public funding.

The annual award will be given to the winner during an international film festival and the 35th Istambul Film Festival was chosen to have the honor of having the first edition of the award ceremony on April 15.

15 films have been pre-selected from across all categories and all films by female directors to compete for the first edition of the Prize. Have to confess that looked all over for the pre-selection criteria and wasn't able to find the rules, regulations or something. Also, got no criteria idea from the 15 films as the only thing I could think of are the omissions of well-known female directors like for example Deniz Gamze Ergüven, Emmanuelle Bercot, and many more. Award seems will be given to less-known directors; but then multiple-award winners like Athina Rachel Tsangari, Lisa Aschan and Lucile Hadzihalilovic are well-known to good-cinema lovers and festival circuit. Hope eventually organizers release rules so we can understand what this award is really all about.

3000 Layla (3000 Nights) Mai Masri, Palestine, Farnce, Jordan, Lebanon, Qatar and UAE
À peine j'ouvre les yeux (As I Open My Eyes), Leyla Bouzid, France, Tunisia and Belgium, 2015
Ana Yurdu (Motherland), Senem Tüzen, Turkey and Greece, 2015
Auf Einmal (All of A Sudden), Aslı Özge, Germany and Netherlands, 2016
Chevalier, Athina Rachel Tsangari, Greece, 2015
Det vita folket (White People, aka The Deposit), Lisa Aschan, Sweden, 2015
Évolution (Evolution), Lucile Hadzihalilovic, France, Belgium and Spain, 2015
Ha'har (Mountain), Yaelle Kayam, Denmark and Israel, 2015
Jajda (Thirst), Svella Tsotsorkova, Bulgaria, 2015
Kasap Havasi (Wedding Dance), Çiğdem Sezgin, Turkey
*La montagne magique (The Magic Mountain), Anca Damian, Romania, France and Poland, 2015 (documentary-animation)
Pesn pesney (Song of Songs), Eva Neymann, Ukraine, 2015
Toz Bezi (Dust Cloth), Ahu Öztürk, Germany and Turkey, 2015
Wild, Nicolette Krebitz, Germany, 2016
Yemekteydim ve Karar Verdim (We Were Dining and I Decided), Görkem Yeltan, Turkey, 2016

Feel compelled to share that even when we all find inaccuracies at IMDb and have learned to "live" with them, looking for info about above films was not an easy task there; which only made me think that not only the film industry "forgets" about female filmmakers but also services that live thanks to the industry, sigh.

To read press release at official site go here, it's a pdf file.

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