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GHENT 2019 Awards

Film Fest Gent crowns Wang Quan’an’s Öndög its champion

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- The 46th Film Fest Gent has just announced its list of winners, where we find the film by the Chinese filmmaker, as well as Martin Eden by Pietro Marcello

Film Fest Gent crowns Wang Quan’an’s Öndög its champion
Öndög by Wang Quan’an

Having presented Öndög at Berlin back in February, Chinese filmmaker Wang Quan’an has now taken home the Grand Prize of the Film Fest Gent, whose jury also handed a Special Award for Best Direction to the Italian filmmaker Pietro Marcello for his adaptation of Jack London’s novel Martin Eden [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Pietro Marcello
film profile
]
.

This year’s event saw Belgian filmmaker Joachim Lafosse presiding over a jury composed of film critic Guy Lodge, sound engineer Midge Costin, director Radu Jude and producers Fiorella Moretti and Dora Bouchoucha Fourati. Öndög is a modern tale set on the Mongolian plains, where a young and unexperienced police officer asks a strong, seasoned shepherdess to help him secure a crime scene in the middle of nowhere. The film charmed the jury and festival organisers who extolled the virtues of this “grand and majestic exploration of intimacy and affection, where people are, at times, mere dots on a colourful canvass”.

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The jury were likewise impressed by the work of Italian filmmaker Pietro Marcello, who was brave enough to venture a radically recontextualised, though surprisingly faithful adaptation of Martin Eden, swapping Jack London’s early 20th century California for last century’s Naples. When the film was presented at the Venice Film Festival towards the end of the summer, it also won its actor Luca Marinelli the Volpi Cup for Best Male Performance.

Specialising in film music, the Festival paid tribute to the rich artistic collaboration between Cuban sound designer Lena Esquenazi and English composer Mica Levi, bestowing upon them the Georges Delerue Award for their work on Colombian director Alejandro Landes’ film, Monos [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
.

Last but not least, the World Soundtrack Lifetime Achievement Award, which is presented yearly, will be handed this Friday to Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki, to whom we owe the scores of The Shining, The Exorcist, and more recently Shutter Island, among many others.

The full list of winners is as follows:

Grand Prix for Best Film
Öndög - Wang Quan’an (Mongolia/China)

Special Jury Award for Best Direction
Martin Eden [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Pietro Marcello
film profile
]
- Petro Marcello (Italy/France/Germany)

Georges Delerue Award
Lena Esquenazi and Mica Levi - Monos [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
(Colombia/Uruguay/Argentina/Netherlands/Denmark/Germany/Sweden/USA)

Best International Short Film
Community Garden - Vytautas Katkus (Lithuania)

Best Short Film by a Student
Hier - Joy Maurits (Belgium)

ACE Image Factory
Da Yie - Anthony Nti (Belgium)

The Fridge Public Choice Award
Da Yie - Anthony Nti

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(Translated from French)

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