Iranian director wins top prize at 2018 BFI London Film Festival

فیلم «جوی»

Tehran (ISNA) - Sudabeh Mortezai’s “Joy”, a drama about a Nigerian woman trying to make a new life for herself and her daughter in Vienna, was presented with the best film award of the Official Competition at the BFI London Film Festival on Saturday October 20.

Jury chief Lenny Abrahamson said, “Joy is a raw, fresh view on sex trafficking with a sharp feminist perspective sewn in throughout… a vital, beautifully made film that my fellow jurors and I urge you to watch.”

Joy is the second film by Iranian-Austrian director Mortezai following Macondo in 2015. It premiered in Venice Days at the Venice film festival in September where it was picked up the Europa Cinemas Label and the inaugural Hearst Film Award for best female direction. Films Boutique has international sales rights.

The Official Competition jury also gave a special commendation to Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra’s Birds Of Passage.

Lukas Dhont’s Girl was awarded the Sutherland award in the best first feature competition by a jury headed by director Francis Lee. The film, which won the Camera d’Or at Cannes, is about a transgender teenager who dreams of becoming a ballet dancer, Screen International reported.

“Girl is an extraordinary coming of age story featuring a truly remarkable central performance,” said Lee.

The Match Factory is handling international rights to Girl which is Belgium’s entry to the foreign-language Oscar category and a frontrunner to score a nomination.

What You Gonna Do When the World Is On Fire? by US-based Italian director Roberto Minervini won the Grierson award for best documentary. Shot in black and white, Minervini follows four stories of black families living in New Orleans. The Match Factory has international rights.

The 2018 BFI London Film Festival took place from October 10 through 21 in London.

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