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Melody and Next Year crowned at the Montreal World Film Festival

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- Lucie Debay and Rachael Blake have jointly snagged the Best Actress Award for Melody, and young director Vania Leturcq has received a fine prize for her debut film, Next Year

Melody and Next Year crowned at the Montreal World Film Festival
Melody by Bernard Bellefroid

The juries of the Montreal World Film Festival have chosen to award prizes to two French-language Belgian films. In the thick of the Official Competition, the exceptional performances given by Rachael Blake and Lucie Debay in Melody [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Bernard Bellefroid
film profile
]
, by Bernard Bellefroid, managed to win over the jury, which bestowed a joint Best Actress Award upon them. In the movie, they play an unusual and moving couple: a wealthy English lady who can no longer have children welcomes a young woman into her home who was born to an unidentified mother and is somewhat adrift in life; the latter then agrees to be a surrogate mother – for a price. An intense relationship then starts to develop between the two women, in which the notions of maternity and filiation are split in two. Australian actress Rachael Blake was seen recently in Sleeping Beauty, whereas Melody constitutes Lucie Debay’s first major film role. Interestingly, the film also received the Special Mention of the Ecumenical Jury. The second feature by Bellefroid is produced by Artemis Productions, in collaboration with Samsa Films and Mille et une Films, and with backing from the CCA, RTBF, the Film Fund Luxembourg and Wallimage/Bruxellimage.

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Presented as a world premiere, Next Year, by young filmmaker Vania Leturcq, has had a brilliant start to its tour of the festivals, winning a Silver Zenith for a First Fiction Feature Film. Next Year depicts a relationship of rivalry-tinged friendship between two young girls on the cusp of adulthood, as they arrive in Paris full of hopes and dreams. Aude and Clothilde are played by Constance Rousseau (All Is Forgiven [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: David Thion
interview: Mia Hansen-Löve
film profile
]
, Un monde sans femmes
 [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
) and Jenna Thiam (The Returned, We Love You, Bastard [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
). Next Year is produced by Hélicotronc, in collaboration with Offshore, and with support from the CCA and RTBF.

Another Belgian title was also singled out at the festival, as Sahim Omar Kalifa’s Bad Hunter was given the Jury Award in the short-film category. 

(Translated from French)

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