After thirty years, a Greek film has won the Golden Alexander “Theodoros Angelopoulos” – Award for Best Feature Film of the 64th Thessaloniki Film Festival.
The film “Animal” by Sofia Exarchou, along with the award, also receives a cash prize of 10,000 euros.
The director received the award on behalf of the committee from Elina Psykou, who emphasized that Golden Alexander is given to a Greek film for the first time since 1993when it was awarded to the film “From the Snow”, directed and scripted by Sotiris Goritsa.
“I am very happy and moved to receive this award here, in Thessaloniki, at my most favorite festival in the world, where I have been coming for so many years to see films and learn about cinema and where I have been coming before I even dared to say to myself that I want to make films too”, said S. Exarchou during the awards ceremony, which for the first time took place separately from the closing film, at noon on Sunday, in the port’s warehouse C’.
“The committee was impressed by ‘Animal’ and from the non-stereotypical depiction of a Greek island in summer, as well as the unseen artists who are there to entertain the tourists. This polyphonic film encapsulates the feeling of finding one’s sense of family, love, but above all sadness”, refers to the reasoning of the committee of the International Competition Section of the 64th FKTH, which consists of Diana Elbaum (producer) , Dieter Koslick (journalist and former director of the Berlin International Film Festival) and Elina Psykou (director, producer).
Meanwhile, the star of the movie “Animal”, Dimitra Vlagkopoulou, received the Award Female Performance in a half-length with Joanna Arnow from the film “The feeling that the time for doing something has passed”, directed by herself.
Still, the movie “Animal” received the independent Crew United awardwhich comes with a five-year free subscription as a Premium Member to the eponymous online platform for connecting Europe’s audiovisual industry professionals.
The presenter of the awards ceremony, Vassilis Terzopoulos, in the pleasant and friendly atmosphere, set the rhythm for the song “Yes sir, I can boogie, boogie woogie all night long…”, performed in the film by Dimitra Vlagkopoulou, and actors and audience responded by singing it loudly.
Argyros Alexandros – Director Award
Joanna Arnou, took to the stage for the second time to receive the Silver Alexander – Director Award, supported by a cash prize of 5,000 euros from COSMOTE TV, for her film “The feeling that the time has passed to do something / The feeling that the time for doing something has passed”. It is a film in which “the jury appreciated the humor and the element of absurdity in this bittersweet comedy centered on a woman, her body and the concept of sexuality”, as pointed out in its reasoning.
The Male Performance Award was received by Kostas Koroneios for his participation in the film “The last taxi driver”, by Stergios Paschos.
Finally, the Screenplay Award of the International Competition was awarded to the film “The lost boys”, by Zeno Graton.
Meet The Neighbors+ awards and accolades shower for… Slayer
The expanded Meet the Neighbors+ competition section, which includes first or second films from the 36 countries of SE Europe, the Mediterranean and the Middle East, was presented this year upgraded, with more prizes awarded.
The Golden Alexander of the specific department, which this year has been renamed the “Michel Dimopoulos” Golden Alexander, honoring the memory of Michel Dimopoulos, who broadened the horizons of the institution by making its internationalization a reality, accompanied by a cash prize of 10,000 euros, was awarded to the film “Ama Gloria” her Marie Amatsukeli.
Accordingly, the Silver Alexandros – Director Award accompanied by a cash prize of 5,000 euros, went to Cedric Suchivali and the film “Notes of a summer / Notes on a summer’.
The Female Performance Award was presented to Muna Hauga for her performance in the film “Boy, thank God / Inshallah a boy”, by Amjad Al Rashid, while the Male Performance Award went to Richard Langton for his performance in the film “We have never been modern / We have never been modern”, by Mackie Hlupastek, and Soma Sandro for his performance in the film “Suffocation / Without air”, by Katalin Montovai.
The Screenplay or Artistic Achievement Award went to the Film “Murderess / Murderess” of her Eva Nathenawhich received a series of independent awards, such as the FIPRESCI Award (International Federation of Film Critics) for a Greek film premiering at the Festival, the ERT first prize, worth 3,000 euros, the Hellenic Cinema Center Award, worth 5,000 euros, the Award of Finos Films, which for the first time in its history awards an award at the Thessaloniki Film Festival distinguishing a Greek film that premieres, worth 3,000 euros, as well as the Fischer Audience Award, for a film of the Meet The Neighbors+ competition section.
>>Film Forward and Immersive
The >>Film Forward section awarded its Golden Alexander – Award for Best Feature Film, which comes with a cash prize of €8,000, to the film “Samsara / Samsara” of Lois Patinhowhile the Argyros Alexandros >>Film Forward – Directing Award, which offers a cash prize of 4,000 euros, was awarded half-way to the films “All dirt roads taste like salt / All dirt roads taste of salt”, by Raven Jackson and “The dawn of man 3 / The human surge 3″, by Edward Williams.
The pioneering Immersive competition section, which embraces creations that utilize the latest new technologies, has chosen as Best Immersive Film, which was awarded a Golden Alexander and a cash prize of 2,000 euros. the “Finally me / Finally me” Marchio Sal.
The rest of the awards
FKTH, one of the first film institutions worldwide to host a podcast competition section, gave Best Podcast Award to “Persistence of Memory” by Cordy Hope Therod and Rhiannon Kiara Vaughnwhile a special mention was given to the podcast “As long as it lasts, I’ll be there!” of Dafnis Anesti and Danais Dragoneas.
The Mermaid Award, given to the best film LGBT+ themed of the official program, went to the movie “The Summer of Carmen / The summer with Carmen” by Zacharias Mavroideswhich also won the Best Film Award of the Student Youth Committee of the University of Thessaloniki, as well as the Fisher Audience Award for Greek Film “Mihalis Kakogiannis”.
The award from the… film festival alliance Smart7, which comes with a cash prize of €5,000, was awarded to the film “India / India” Telmo Churo.
The “Human Values” award of the Hellenic Parliament was won by the film “Fingernails» of Christos Nikos.
It was awarded for the second year Accessibility Award of Alpha Bank to a personality or a film that highlights accessibility issues in the arts and is accompanied by €3,000. This year it was won by Stavros Zafeiris for his performance in the film “Touch / Touched’ by her Claudia Rorarius.
The FIPRESCI prize for the best film of the International Competition was won by the film “In the lens / In camera” of Nakas Khalid.
PEKK (Panhellenic Union of Film Critics) awarded its prize to the film “The Last Taxi Driver / The last taxi driver”.
ERT, for the first time this year, also gave a second prize, this one Original Musicwhich is accompanied by the sum of 2,000 and was awarded in half to Giannis Konsolakis for the movieDolls of Dresden» his Alexis Tsafa and to Nikos Veliotis and Dimitris Kariophyllis for the movieButterfly nymph caterpillar” of Kyros Papavasiliou.
The second prize of the Hellenic Film Center Location Award was received by Petros Chytirislocation manager of the film «Little things that went wrong / Little things that went wrong”, by Harry Vafiadis.
The Ioannou F. Kostopoulos Foundation Award established in 2019 on the occasion of its 40th anniversary was awarded to the film “Polydroso” of Alexandrou Voulgaris.
The WIFT GR (Women In Film & Television) Award was awarded to the film “All dirt roads taste like salt / All dirt roads taste of salt” by Raven Jackson.
The Special Award of the Thessaloniki University Student Youth Committee was given to the film “The Rhapsodist” by Nicolai Hamel.
The remaining Fisher Audience Awards were given as follows:
- For a film of the International Competition in the film “Anthropomorphic Vampire Seeks Suicidal Man” by Ariane Louis-Sez,
- For a film of the Film Forward competition section in the film “Embryo larva butterfly” by Kyros Papavasiliou and
- For a film of the Open Horizons department in the film “A cup of coffee and new shoes on” by Gedian Kochi.
Present at the event was the Agora ambassador, Haris Alexiou.
The ending film “Fallen leaves” of Aki Kaurismaki will be shown at 8 pm at the Olympian cinema.