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DIFF AWARDS (article first published : 2007-08-10)

At the Awards Night for the 28th Durban International Film Festival at the end of June, award-winners were presented with cash awards and prizes in the form of traditional Zulu dolls.

The Best Film prize was awarded to Ezra, by UK-based Nigerian director Newton Aduaka, a story set within the conflict of Sierra Leone. The International Jury’s commendation highlighted Ezraas a “bold and daring film that takes us into the heart of the politics of war and hatred”. The award carries a cash prize of R30,000.

Best South African Film award, with a cash prize of R20,000, went to Heartlines, directed by Angus Gibson. The jury praised the film for its “attention to cinematographic detail and its unflinching adherence to its core message of redemption”.

South African director Teboho Mahlatsi’s Sekalli Le Meokgo (Meokgo and the Stickfighter) scooped both Best Short Film and Best South African Short Film awards, while The Mother’s House by Francois Verster won Best South African Documentary award. The Amnesty International Durban Human Rights Award, accompanied by 2,000 euro cash prize, went to Shame, a film from Pakistan directed by Mohammed Naqvi.

Other awards include: Best First Feature Film: shared by The Unpolished (Germany), directed by Pia Marais and The Unforgiven (Korea), directed by Yoon Jong-bin. Best Direction went to Jia Zhang-Ke for Still Life (Hong Kong/China); Best Actress to Cherry Pie Picache in Summer Heat (Philippines), and Best Actor to Emir Hadzihafisbegovic in Armin (Croatia/Germany/Bosnia and Herzegovina).

Best Cinematography was won by Christophe Lanzenberg for The Sensation Of Sight (USA), with Best Screenplay going to Gal Uchovsky and Eytan Fox for The Bubble (Israel). The Special Mention Jury Prize was awarded to Meisie (South Africa), directed by Darrell James Roodt.

Best Documentary was awarded to Cats of Mirikitani (USA) directed by Linda Hattendorf and the Special Mention Documentary was Nomadak Tx (Spain), directed by Raul de la Fuente, Pablo Iraburu, Harkaitz Mtnez de San Vincente and Igor Otxoa.

The Big Fish School of Digital Design Best Short Film Newcomer Award went to Amambuka Westrike (South Africa) directed by Marthinus Lamprecht and the Special Mention Short Film to The Griot from Dapore (Burkina Faso/The Netherlands) by Jaap van Heusden.

The Audience Choice Best Feature Film was Red Like the Sky (Rosso Come Il Cielo) directed by Cristiano Bortone..

More information at www.cca.ukzn.ac.za




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