Farming comes out on top at Edinburgh
by Kaleem Aftab
- Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s movie has won the Michael Powell Award for Best British Film; other winners include Aurora and Sakawa
A jury comprising Antonia Campbell-Hughes, David Hayman and Philip John has judged Farming [+see also:
film profile], the first film by actor-turned-director Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, as the winner of the Michael Powell Award for Best British Feature Film at the Edinburgh International Film Festival (19-30 June). The Michael Powell Award honours imagination and creativity in British filmmaking. In fact, there was a double celebration for Farming, as it also harvested the award for Best Performance in a British Feature Film for its star Damson Idris.
The jury called Farming “an important, powerful and disturbing film. This story forces us to confront an unfamiliar, uncomfortable reality. Farming keeps you invested in its brutal world. Culturally adrenalising. Visceral. Inspirational.” Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje said: “I am absolutely thrilled to have received this prestigious award, named after one of my cinematic heroes. It is a huge and humbling honour. I am equally delighted that Damson Idris won for Best Performance. Thank you so much to the festival.”
A jury composed of Natalie Brenner, Jack Lowden and Fred Tsui awarded Miia Tervo’s Aurora [+see also:
interview: Miia Tervo
film profile] the Best International Feature Film Award. The international jury praised the Finnish film “for its uniqueness and originality. We completely fell in love with every single character, big or small, all flawed yet beautiful and set in a world that we were reluctant to leave.”
William Guentzler, Daniel Monzón and Larushka Ivan-Zadeh were the jury members who gave Ben Asamoah’s first feature, Sakawa [+see also:
film profile], the Award for Best Documentary Film, stating, “The highly sophisticated debut from the Belgian-Ghanaian filmmaker is a timely and unsettling metaphor for our interconnected world.”
The Award for Best Short Film went to Anca Damian’s The Call. Special Mentions were also given to The Fabric of You and Red Film. This year’s jury was made up of Moyo Akandé, Regina Mosch and Tara Karajica.
The winner of this year’s EIFF Works in Progress, and therefore the recipient of the £2,500 prize, was the documentary Women Behind the Wheel: Unheard Voices on the Pamir Highway, produced and co-directed by Hannah Congdon and Catherine Haigh.
The EIFF Youth New Visions short-film competition was won this year by The Processing Room by Cameron Lambert (in the 14-18 age category) and Red Hill, made by Laura Carreira (in the 19-25 age group).
Here is the complete list of award winners:
Best Performance in a British Feature Film
Damson Idris – Farming
Best Short Film
The Call – Anca Damian (Romania)
The Fabric of You - Josephine Lohoar Self (UK)
Red Film - Sara Cwynar (USA)
EIFF Works in Progress
Women Behind the Wheel: Unheard Voices on the Pamir Highway – Hannah Congdon and Catherine Haigh
EIFF Youth New Visions
14-18 age group
The Processing Room - Cameron Lambert
19-25 age group
Red Hill - Laura Carreira
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