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The 51st Chicago International Film Festival announced its winners Saturday afternoon, which features over 130 feature films from over 50 countries from Oct. 15-29.
French Film, A Chilldhood, won top prize gold hugo at the fest. In a gala awards ceremony held at the Peninsula Hotel on Friday night, director Philippe Claudel’s film depicts poverty in a small provincial French town. Its two child leads, Alexi Mathieu and Jules Gauzelin, shared the Silver Hugo for Best Actor.
Director Michael Moore won the founder’s award for his film Where To Invade Next. Presented by the festival’s founder Michael Kutza, Moore was especially elated to receive the award in his native Midwest: “Chicago is the capital of the Midwest, and I just won the founder’s award here,” Moore said.
Paulina (Argentina, Brazil) won the silver hugo for special jury prize. Directed by Santiago Mitre, it tells the story of an idealistic lawyer who leaves her prosperous career to practice in a rural community.
The silver hugo for best director was bestowed on The Club (Chile), directed by Pablo Larrain, while Lizzie Brochere won the silver hugo for best female actor for Full Contact (Netherlands, Croatia).
In the acting category, the cast of The Club (Chile) won a silver plaque for best ensemble. The Club’s screenwriters Guillermo Calderon, Daniel Villalobos and Pablo Larrain shared the silver plaque for best screenplay.
The silver plaque for best cinematography went to Frank Van den Eeden for Full Contact (Netherlands, Croatia), while the silver plaque for best art direction went to Toma Baqueni for My Golden Days (France).
The festival’s new directors competition, which celebrates first and second feature films, honored Underground Fragrance (China), directed by Pengfei Song, with a gold hugo. The silver hugo went to Sparrows (Iceland), directed by Runar Runarsson.
The Roger Ebert award, which will be presented annually to an emerging filmmaker whose film presents a fresh and uncompromising vision, went to Nahid (Iran), directed by Ida Panahandeh.
The gold hugo in the festival’s documentary competition went to Volta à Terra (Portugal, Switzerland), directed by Joao Pedro Placido, while the silver hugo went to In The Underground (China), directed by Song Zhantao.
The festival presented a gold plaque special mention to Time Suspended (Mexico, Argentina ), directed by Natalia Bruschtein.
In the festival’s OUT-Look program, which includes films that exhibit new artistic perspectives on sexuality and identity, the gold Q hugo went to Carol (USA), directed by Todd Haynes. The silver Q hugo was presented to Henry Gamble’s Birthday Party (USA), directed by Stephen Cone.
The gold hugo, live action went to Leidi (Colombia, UK), directed by Simón Mesa Soto. The silver Hugo, live action went to The Exquisite Corpus (Austria), directed by Peter Tscherkassky.
A gold plaque, live action was presented to One-minded (South Korea), directed by Sébastien Simon and Forest Ian Estler, while the silver plaque, live action went to Ramona (Romania), directed by Andrei Cretulescu.
Other short winners include: silver hugo, documentary to Santa Cruz del Islote (US, Colombia), directed by Luke Lorentzen; gold plaque, documentary to A Tale of Love, Madness and Death (Chile), directed by Mijael Bustos Gutiérrez; silver hugo, animated to Sunday Lunch (France), directed by Céline Devaux; gold plaque, animated to The Same River Twice (USA), directed by Weijia Ma, and silver plaque, animated to Waves ’98 (Lebanon, Qatar), directed by Ely Dagher. Radical Grace, directed by Rebecca Parrish, won the Chicago Plaque.
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