Shanghai International Film Fest: Turkey, China Win Top Awards

3:51 PM PST 06/19/2011 by Jonathan Landreth

SIFF awards first mobile phone film prizes.

BEIJING – Hayde Bre, by Turkish director by Orhan Oguz won the Golden Goblet for Best Feature Film at the Shanghai International Film Festival on Sunday, while Chinese director Han Jie won the Best Director prize for his film Mr. Tree, which took home the Jury Grand Prix.

Jurists at the 14th edition of China’s largest cinema event, a group led by Hollywood director Barry Levinson, praised Oguz’s drama in a statement on the SIFF web site: “What attracted to us was its stark, honest, unflinching look at a mother dealing with a modern world and her separation from her rural background, a woman caught up in a changing world and the painful struggle she faces. The film was effective, sometimes disturbing, but always true to its intentions.”

Of Han Jie’s direction of Mr. Tree, the Jury Grand Prix winner about a migrant worker turned accidental prophet, the jury, which also included Tran Anh Hung, Paz Vega, Zhang Jingchu, Wang Quan’an Yoichi Sai and Christopher Hamption, said: “Being clear and understandable with a complex theme while staying subtle to avoid being simplistic and having the ability to create abstract and mysterious emotion, that is an accomplished direction.”

The SIFF Award for Best Screenplay went to Zhang Ming for The Young Man Sings Folk Songs in the Opposite Door, a film that also took home the Award for Best Actress, given to Lu Xingchen, and the Award for Best Music, which went to Wen Zi.

The Award for Best Actor went to Sevket Emrulla in Hayde Bre and the Award for Best Cinematography went to Thai D.P. Tiwa Moeithaisong for his lensing of Friday Killer, a “good looking gangster epic paying tribute to Quentin Tarantino,” directed by Yuthlert Sippapak, who took home the SIFF Jury Prize.

SIFF also awarded 10 winners in the event’s inaugural Cell Phone Short Films competition, launched to highlight a new media platform and provide young directors with international exposure.

Acclaimed Hong director Tsui Hark chaired the jury, which also included Chinese actress Zhao Tao and Thai film director Nonzee Nimibutr.

"We are impressed by the creativity, artistry and realistic and natural feel of many entries," Tsui said in a statement on the SIFF web site. "It will be a flourishing new genre of filmmaking in the near future."

More than 10,000 cell phone short films from around the world were submitted for the competition and 50 films from over 27 countries were nominated.

Chinese short Fading Flowers by Su Jiaming received both the Grand Short Award and Best Documentary Award. The touching film documents an ordinary couple's long-term dedication to 38 abandoned children, most of whom are disabled.

Beast by Hungarian director Attila Till won the Best Feature Film Award. The short was inspired by news stories on modern-day slavery.

Chinese production Dauntless Man by Wang Zizhao won the Best Comedy Award for its amusing portrayal of China's youth today.

German director Fred Willitzkat was named Best Director for The Soup, a story about cultural differences and prejudice. German short Out on a Limb won Best Animation Award and French work The Line garnered Best Action Prize.

The Mirror from Switzerland took the Best Creative Idea Award. The Audience Choice Award went to Centripetal from Venezuela and German short Leave without Running got the Special Jury Award.

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