'Volver,' 'Lives' top EFA noms

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"Volver," an opulent melodrama from veteran Spanish director Pedro Almodovar, and "The Lives of Others," a claustrophobic look at life in communist East Germany from first-timer helmer Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, garnered the most nominations for this year's European Film Awards.

"Volver" and "Lives" each picked up six EFA noms, including ones for best European film, best director and best actress -- for Penelope Cruz ("Volver") and Martina Gedeck ("Lives"). "Lives" co-star Ulrich Muehe picked up a best actor nom for his portrayal of a Stasi surveillance expert.

Cruz and Gedeck are up against some tough competition, including Sandra Hueller, nominated for her performance as a girl possessed by demons in "Requiem"; Mirjana Karanovic, as woman scarred by the Balkan war in Jasmila Zbanic's "Grbavica"; Nathalie Baye as a tough police detective in "Le petit lieutenant," from Xavier Beauvois; and Sarah Polley as a hearing-impaired woman caring for a disabled man in "The Secret Life of Words."

Close behind "Volver" and "Lives" in the EFA-nomination stakes was Ken Loach's Palme d'Or winner "The Wind That Shakes the Barley," which received five nominations, including film, director and actor for Cillian Murphy.

Murphy's nom also was for his performance as an Irish transvestite in Neil Jordan's "Breakfast on Pluto," a best European film nominee.

The other titles nominated for the top prize include "Grbavica" and "The Road to Guantanamo," from Michael Winterbottom and Mat Whitecross.

Two films that hardly could be more different -- Susanne Bier's dark drama "After the Wedding" and Joe Wright's playful period romp "Pride & Prejudice" -- received two nominations apiece. Bier was nominated in the European director category, with "Wedding" star Mads Mikkelsen receiving an actor nom, while "Pride & Prejudice" earned noms for cinematography and score.

The European Film Academy announced the 2006 EFA nominees Saturday at the Seville Film Festival in Spain. The 2006 European Film Awards will be presented at a gala ceremony Dec. 2 in Warsaw, Poland.

A full list of 2006 EFA nominees follows:


EUROPEAN FILM 2006
"BREAKFAST ON PLUTO" dir. Neil Jordan
"GRBAVICA" dir. Jasmila Zbanic
"THE LIVES OF OTHERS" dir. Florian Henckel von
Donnersmarck
"THE ROAD TO GUANTANAMO" dir. Michael Winterbottom &
Mat Whitecross
"VOLVER" dir. Pedro Almodovar
"THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY" dir. Ken Loach

EUROPEAN DIRECTOR 2006
Pedro Almodovar for "VOLVER"
Susanne Bier for "AFTER THE WEDDING"
Emanuele Crialese for "GOLDEN DOOR"
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck for "THE LIVES OF
OTHERS"
Ken Loach for "THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY"
Michael Winterbottom & Mat Whitecross for "THE ROAD TO
GUANTANAMO"

EUROPEAN ACTRESS 2006
Nathalie Baye in "LE PETIT LIEUTENANT"
Penelope Cruz in "VOLVER"
Martina Gedeck in "THE LIVES OF OTHERS"
Sandra Hueller in "REQUIEM"
Mirjana Karanovic in "GRBAVICA"
Sarah Polley in "THE SECRET LIFE OF WORDS"

EUROPEAN ACTOR 2006
Patrick Chesnais in "NOT HERE TO BE LOVED"
Jesper Christensen in "MANSLAUGHTER"
Mads Mikkelsen in "AFTER THE WEDDING"
Ulrich Muehe in "THE LIVES OF OTHERS"
Cillian Murphy in "BREAKFAST ON PLUTO" & "THE WIND
THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY"
Silvio Orlando in "THE CAIMAN"

EUROPEAN CINEMATOGRAPHER 2006
Barry Ackroyd for "THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY"
Jose Luis Alcaine for "VOLVER"
Roman Osin for "PRIDE AND PREJUDICE"
Timo Salminen for "LIGHTS IN THE DUSK"

EUROPEAN SCREENWRITER 2006
Pedro Almodovar for "VOLVER"
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck for "THE LIVES OF
OTHERS"
Paul Laverty for "THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY"
Corneliu Porumboiu for "12:08 EAST OF BUCHAREST"

EUROPEAN COMPOSER 2006
Alberto Iglesias for "VOLVER"
Tuomas Kantelinen for "MOTHER OF MINE"
Dario Marianelli for "PRIDE AND PREJUDICE"
Gabriel Yared & Stephane Moucha for "THE LIVES OF
OTHERS"
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