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La Roche-sur-Yon hands top prize to Problemski Hotel

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- Belgian director Manu Riche’s film snagged the Grand Prix, Stéphane Brizé’s A Woman’s Life took home the Special Jury Prize, and the New Waves strand recognised Where Is Rocky II?

La Roche-sur-Yon hands top prize to Problemski Hotel
Problemski Hotel by Manu Riche

It was a Belgian victory at the seventh La Roche-sur-Yon International Film Festival with the international Jury (chaired by Muriel Merlin3B Productions) bestowing the Grand Prix upon Manu Riche’s Problemski Hotel [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
. Starring Tarek Halaby (winner of this year’s Ensor Award for Best Newcomer), Evgenia Brendes and Gökhan Girginol, the film, which is an adaptation of Dimitri Verhulst’s (the author of The Misfortunates [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Felix van Groeningen
film profile
]
) novel of the same name, recounts the misadventures of migrants born in war-torn regions who are thrust into the Kafkaesque absurdity of the no man’s land of drop-in centres. Produced by Emmy Oost for Cassette for Timescapes, Problemski Hotel was co-produced by Thank You & Good Night Productions and Dutch outfit Volya Films, with support from the Flanders Audiovisual Fund, the Netherlands Film Fund and the Centre du Cinéma et de l’Audiovisuel de la Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles, among others.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)Cine Iberoamericano Int

The international jury also handed their Special Jury Prize to A Woman’s Life [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: Stéphane Brizé
film profile
]
by Stéphane Brizé, which stunned the audiences when it was unveiled in Venice’s competition (to be released in France 23 November through Diaphana).

The New Waves competition awarded its prize ex aequo to Kate Plays Christine by US director Robert Greene and Where Is Rocky II?, French visual artist Pierre Bismuth’s directorial debut. The director won the 2005 Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind alongside Charlie Kaufman and Michel Gondry. Mixing elements of both documentary and fiction to portray the search for a mysterious painting by famous artist Ed Ruscha, the feature film was produced by The Ink Connection (France) with Vandertastic (Germany), Frakas Productions (Belgium) and Italian outfits In Between Art Film and Vivo Film.

As a final note, the prize for the Trajectories competition was given to the Norwegian documentary,Brothers [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
,by Aslaug Holm, the Audience Award went to Manchester by the Seaby US filmmaker Kenneth Lonergan, Italian director Gabriele Mainetti’sThey Call Me Jeeg [+see also:
trailer
making of
film focus
interview: Gabriele Mainetti
film profile
]
(to be released in France in early 2017 via Nour Films) took out second place, and Aloys [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Tobias Nölle
film profile
]
by Switzerland’s Tobias Nölle rounded out the top three.

Here is the list of all of the award winners for 2016:

Grand Prix
Problemski Hotel [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
– Manu Riche (Belgium/Netherlands)

Special Jury Prize
A Woman’s Life [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: Stéphane Brizé
film profile
]
– Stéphane Brizé (France/Belgium)

New Waves Jury Prize
Where Is Rocky II? – Pierre Bismuth (France/Germany/Belgium/Italy)
Kate Plays Christine – Robert Greene (USA)

Audience Award
Manchester by the Sea– Kenneth Lonergan (USA)
2nd place:
They Call Me Jeeg [+see also:
trailer
making of
film focus
interview: Gabriele Mainetti
film profile
]
– Gabriele Mainetti (Italy)
3
rd place: Aloys [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Tobias Nölle
film profile
]
– Tobias Nölle (Switzerland/France)

Trajectories Award
Brothers – Aslaug Holm (Norway)

Mention Spéciale
Girl Asleep – Rosemary Myers (Australia)

(Translated from French)

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