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COTTBUS 2020 Awards

Ivan I Tverdovskiy scores his third victory at the FilmFestival Cottbus with Conference

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- Piotr Domalewski's drama I Never Cry and Ivan Ikić's Oasis were also noticed during the 30th-anniversary edition of the German festival, this year unspooling online

Ivan I Tverdovskiy scores his third victory at the FilmFestival Cottbus with Conference
Director Ivan I Tverdovskiy accepting his Best Film Award for Conference, via video link

Prizes worth €72,000 were handed out at the 30th edition of the FilmFestival Cottbus on 12 December during an awards ceremony broadcast online, with Ivan I Tverdovskiy's Conference [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ivan I Tverdovsky
film profile
]
named Best Film. Interestingly enough, it marked the third victory for the Russian filmmaker after Corrections Class [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ivan I Tverdovsky
film profile
]
and Zoology [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ivan I Tverdovsky
film profile
]
.

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“It serves as proof of the successful work of our co-production market, the international standing of both events and, last but not least, the excellent interaction between the market and the festival,” observed CEO Andreas Stein, noting that Conference was previously pitched in its connecting cottbus industry sidebar. The jury, consisting of Arndt Schwering-Sohnrey, Axel Ranisch, Bodo Kox, Maria Trigo Teixeira and Yang Ge, called the film “a masterpiece composed in minute detail”, noting that its “whirlwind-like power simply sweeps everyone out of their cinema seats”.

Poland's Piotr Domalewski was named Best Director for I Never Cry [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Piotr Domalewski
film profile
]
(“a film characterised by an excellent storytelling ability and the young leading actress who plays a very difficult, emotional character”, they stated), also scooping the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury. Ivan Ikić's Oasis [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ivan Ikic
film profile
]
, filmed with non-professional actors in a residential home for intellectually disabled teenagers, was noticed by the FIPRESCI jury, as well as for the performances of Marijana Novakov, Tijana Marković and Valentino Zenuni.

The Flying Circus [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Fatos Berisha
interview: Fatos Berisha
film profile
]
by Fatos Berisha, about four men trying their best to meet Michael Palin, was chosen as Best Debut Film, and the jury for the U18 Youth Film Competition opted for the touching Kazakh drama about addiction, 18 Kilohertz by Farkhat Sharipov. “Not only did it impact us while watching it, but it also stayed in our minds and hearts as we began to live again – after the movie had taken our breath away,” they noted.

“We are noticing a new, special kind of appreciation for Eastern European cinema and the format we have implemented to present it online in the given situation,” said programme director Bernd Buder. “We are delighted that we will continue to stream the film programme, as well as numerous discussion formats about the films, nationwide until 31 December, which allows us to celebrate our 30th birthday with the longest festival edition ever – running for a whole 24 days.” Many happy returns.

The 31st edition of the FilmFestival Cottbus will take place from 2-7 November 2021.

Here is the full list of award winners:

Best Film
Conference [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ivan I Tverdovsky
film profile
]
- Ivan I Tverdovskiy (Russia/Estonia/UK/Italy)

Best Director
I Never Cry [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Piotr Domalewski
film profile
]
- Piotr Domalewski (Poland/Ireland)

Best Individual Performance
Marijana Novakov, Tijana Marković and Valentino Zenuni - Oasis [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ivan Ikic
film profile
]
(Serbia/Slovenia/Netherlands/France/Bosnia and Herzegovina)

Best Debut Film
The Flying Circus [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Fatos Berisha
interview: Fatos Berisha
film profile
]
- Fatos Berisha (Kosovo/Albania)

Prize of the Ecumenical Jury
I Never Cry - Piotr Domalewski

FIPRESCI Award
Oasis - Ivan Ikić

The “From Cottbus to Cinema” – Distribution Support Prize
Adventures of a Mathematician [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
- Thorsten Klein (Germany/Poland/UK)

Best Short
Greetings from Nigeria - Peter Hoferica (Slovakia)

Special Prize in the Short Film Competition
Eggshells - Slava Doytcheva (Bulgaria)

Best Youth Film
18 Kilohertz - Farkhat Sharipov (Kazakhstan)

DIALOGUE Prize for Intercultural Communication
Bohdan Sláma - Shadow Country [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
(Czech Republic/Slovakia)

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