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BERLINALE 2012 Portugal

Berlin laureates Gomes and Salaviza ring the alarm bell


Berlin laureates Gomes and Salaviza ring the alarm bell

Portuguese directors Miguel Gomes and João Salaviza (pictured), the filmmakers behind Tabu [+see also:
film review
interview: Miguel Gomes
interview: Miguel Gomes
film profile
and Rafa respectively, both received awards this evening during the closing ceremony of the 62nd Berlinale.

Tabu, filmed in black and white and with a narrative structure in two parts (read more), won the FIPRESCI prize, announced on Friday, and the Alfred Bauer Prize, that awards a film for its innovative characteristics.

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In his acceptance speech, Gomes noted with irony that he had actually intended to make an “old-fashioned” film, then dedicated his award to Portuguese cinema, “ to the talent of filmmakers like Manoel Oliveira, Pedro Costa, César Monteiro, Paulo Rocha and others who for 50 years did a cinema which is independent from both political and economical power.”

Gomes’ implicit tone of protest was echoed in Salaviza’s acceptance speech, who a few minutes before received a Golden Bear for his short film Rafa. The 27-year-old director, laureate of the Golden Camera at Cannes 2008 for his short Arena, dedicated his award to the Portuguese government: “ If they do a good job, I'll dedicate this prize to them. It's a conditional offer,” he said.

International recognition for Tabu and Rafa comes at a critical time for Portuguese cinema, or at least one more critical than usual. Subsidies from the ICA have been suspended since January, and public debate on a new cinema law, to which the sector's professionals oppose, has been open since the beginning of February.

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(Translated from Spanish)

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