Friday, November 23, 2012

International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) 2012 Awards – winners

The winners of the festival’s various competition programmes have just been announced in the Compagnietheater in Amsterdam at the awards ceremony of the 25th IDFA.

Alan Berliner picked up the VPRO IDFA Award for Best Feature-Length Documentary (€ 12,500) for First Cousin Once Removed, a portrait of his uncle during the latter stages of his life, which were marked by Alzheimer’s disease. According to the jury, Alan Berliner employs intelligence, inventiveness and a poetic sensibility to create a film that uses the onset on Alzheimer's to make a beautiful, moving and artistic statement about the intersection of personal history and memory.

Lida Chan and Guillaume Suon received the NTR IDFA Award for Best Mid-Length Documentary (€ 10,000) for Red Wedding (Cambodia/France): the poignant story of Cambodian Sochan Pen, who as a sixteen-year-old was forced to marry a soldier of the Khmer Rouge. Red Wedding was made possible by financial support from the IDFA Fund and was one of the projects at the IDFAcademy Summer School last summer. In September, the film also picked up the IDFA Worldview Award – a grant contributing towards the finance of the production.

The IDFA Award for First Appearance ( € 5,000) was presented to Esther Hertog for Soldier on the Roof (the Netherlands), a film providing insight into everday lives in the Jewish enclave in Hebron, where 800 colonists live among their 120,000 Palestian neighbours.

Esther Hertog also won the Dioraphte IDFA Award for Dutch Documentary (€ 5,000) for Soldier on the Roof.

The BankGiro Loterij IDFA Audience Award ( € 5,000) went to Searching for Sugar Man (Sweden / Engeland) by Malik Bendjelloul.

The IDFA Award for Student Competition (€ 2,500) went to Chico Pereira for Pablo’s Winter (Scotland/Spain). Pablo’s Winter is a humorous portrait of inveterate smoker Pablo, who spends his retirement complaining and reminiscing about the old days, when everything was better.

Malik Bendjelloul received the IDFA Melkweg Award for Best Music Documentary (€ 2,500) for Searching for Sugar Man, about the mysterious American singer-songwriter Rodriguez, who is completely unknown outside of South Africa.

The IDFA DocLab Award for Digital Storytelling (€ 2,500) went to Miquel Dewever-Plana and Isabelle Fougère for Alma, a Tale of Violence (France). This interactive tablet documentary graphically tells the story of former gangster Alma.

The IDFA DOC U Award, worth (€ 1,500) and awarded by a jury of young people, went to Marcel Barrena for Little World (Spain), about nineteen-year-old Albert who travels in his wheelchair, with his girlfriend but without any money, to the other side of the world.

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