The 29th International Film Festival’s awards ceremony took place on 17 November in Cankarjev dom’s Linhart Hall. The host Branko Završan bid the audience good evening and then asked Tina Jančič to announce the Kinotrip Young Jury Award on behalf of the jury that consisted of Aleš Belšak, Sara Janežič, Ema Paš and Ajda Rudolf. The award went to The Rider by Chloé Zhao. The jury stated that the winning film was “a sensitive story about a young individual questioning his identity. Despite the movie’s specific cultural milieu, each of us could identify with the challenges confronted by the disillusioned character.” On behalf of the filmmaker, the award was accepted by the chargé d'affaires of the US Embassy, Gautam Rana. The Dragon Audience Award went to Aga by Milko Lazarov (4.66 points out of 5). The FIPRESCI Prize was presented by Jasmina Šepetavc (other jurors were Robert Horton and Kristina Kudelova). “Styx takes the classic situation of a man and the sea and dramatically changes it: This is a woman and the sea, and the adventure is one of conscience.” The FIPRESCI Prize was accepted by co-screenwriter Ika Künzel.
The Best Short Film Jury consisted of Igor Bezinović, Milan Stojanović and Tanja Hladnik. Special Mention went to The Box by Dušan Kastelic “for its impressive visual approach to the nightmarish vision of the murky box, rememberable appearance of the characters, and invigorating sense of humour.” The Best Short Film Award went to Matria by Álvaro Gago Díaz “for its dedication to social sensibility and engagement”. The award was presented by Marko Kozamernik, director of Rap-ing inženiring.
The Kingfisher Award is presented to best film of the Perspectives section, and awarded by the main festival sponsor, Telekom Slovenije. Tomaž Jontes, Director of Marketing Communications, explained that their motto was: “All’s well if the films are good.” The Kingfisher jury, consisting of Klaus Eder, Jurica Pavičić and Ida Weiss, presented two Special Mentions: to Urša Menart’s My Last Year as a Loser “for giving voice to her own generation and their problems by using a refined blend of drama and humour,” and Ognjen Glavonić’s The Load, “a politically brave and stylistically powerful film that discusses personal responsibility in a time of war.”
The Kingfisher Award went to Woman at War by Benedikt Erlingsson, “for achieving what is rare in world cinema. An intelligent and amusing comedy that confidently plays with various cinematic styles and conventions.” The award was accepted by producer Marianne Slot Nielsen.
Crew members of the concluding festival film, Winter Flies, director Olmo Omerzu, producer Jiří Konečný, co-producer Rok Biček and young actors Tomáš Mrvík and Jan František Uher, joined Završan for a short Q&A.
“See you at the 30th Liffe,” concluded the evening’s host before the screening of Omerzu’s film.
An after-party followed the 29th Liffe’s awards ceremony and a screening of Winter Flies by Olmo Omerzu. The convivial atmosphere at the CD Club was created by DJ Manoo and Jameson Band. We spotted numerous filmmakers whose films screened at the festival, including Olmo Omerzu (producers Jiříja Konečnýja and Rok Biček, as well as young actors Tomáš Mrvík and Jan František Uher), Urša Menart, director of My Last Year as a Loser by, director of Sing Me a Song, a documentary about singer/songwriter Vlado Kreslin, Miran Zupanič, director of Ederlezi Rising, Lazar Borodža, and actor Sebastian Cavazza, producer of Woman at War (Benedikt Erlingsson), The House that Jack Built (Lars von Trier) and Vision (Naomi Kawase), Marianne Slot Nielsen, Chilean Tomas Alzamora, director of Little White Lie, and director and writer of Secret Ingredient, Gjorce Stavreski. The party was also attended by post-screening Q&A moderators, Toni Cahunek, Tina Poglajen (member of Liffe’s programme board) and president of the Kraken Society, Peter Cerovšek. Other celebrities included legendary director Karpo Godina, actor Brane Završan, actress Manca Dorrer, actor Gašper Markun, director Martin Horvat, director Dražen Štader, actress and moderator Valentina Plaskan, cinematographer Lev Predan Kowarski, director Marko Kumer Murč and producer Eva Tomazin.
Photo Iztok Dimc