San Sebastian Fest Unveils New Directors Award Contenders

Thirteen films from around the globe compete for the Kutxa New Directors Award and the $67,000 cash prize.

MADRID — Thirteen films directed by up-and-coming auteurs from Europe, Latin America and Asia will compete for the Kutxa New Directors Award and the $67,000 (50,000 euros) cash prize at this year’s upcoming San Sebastian Film Festival, organizers announced Wednesday.

The trials and tribulations of youth are the subject of many of the films such as Chrieg, by Swiss director Simon Jaquemet, a story of four teenagers wreaking havoc after escaping from a boot camp for troubled youths in the Alps. 

German entry Limbo, directed by Anne Sofie Hartmann, tells of the relationship between an adolescent and a young teacher in a small Danish town. The joint Latvian, Greek and German production Modris, by Juris Kursietis, is about a juvenile delinquent turned over to the police by his mother. 

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In Name Me, from Russian director Nigina Sayfullaeva, tells the story of two 17-year-old Moscow schoolgirls' Crimean vacation that goes terribly wrong following an apparently harmless joke, and in the French film Vincent by Thomas Salvador, a young man confesses his strange powers to a young girl with whom he has fallen in love. 

Other European entries are Romania’s Toto and His Sisters by Alexander Nanau, The Silly Ones and the Stupid Ones by Spaniard Roberto Caston, The Lesson from Bulgaria jointly directed by Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov, and Cain’s Children, a Hungarian and French production helmed by Marcell Gero.

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Latin America is represented by The Mother of the Lamb from Chile directed by Rosario Espinoza and Enrique Farias, joint Uruguayan and Argentine effort A Moonless Night by German Tejeira and It’s Not Vigil, a Colombian-Spanish production by Hermes Paralluelo

Asia’s sole entry is the South Korean-Canadian production In Her Place, by Albert Shin, about a mysterious woman who comes to live with a mother and her teen daughter on a farm. 

“With this selection and the Kutxa New Directors Award, the San Sebastian Festival maintains its firm commitment to the cinematic talents of the future,” said the organizers of the fest which will be held Sept. 19-27 in the northern Spanish coastal city.