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With the traditional FEST awards ceremony and the premiere of the film crowned with the Milutin Čolić Award, ‘Mouth Full of Earth’ by Puriša Đorđević, the curtain was lowered on this year's 51st edition of the festival.

According to the jury of the daily newspaper Politika, the Milutin Čolić Award went to the director of the best Serbian film at the 51st FEST. It was awarded posthumously to Mladomir Puriša Đorđević for the film ‘Mouth Full of Earth’. The award was received on behalf of the family by director Radivoje Raša Andrić.

‘On behalf of Puriša's daughter Lidija, I thank the jury for the award named after Milutin Čolić, Puriša's friend and neighbour from Đure Salaja Street. Puriša started as a journalist in Politika, but he was soon captivated by the world of film and that passion had never left him. This film, based on the famous novel by Branimir Šćepanović, he had wanted to make for a long time. He worked on it with a passion that was stronger than anything else. In all of his 98 years, he worked at all costs, ready to compromise until his last breath and with great joy. From that perspective, this is not only his film, this is his passion of life’, said Raša Andrić, son-in-law of Purisa Đorđević.    

The Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean Jury unanimously decided to give the award for Best Euro-Mediterranean film in the Main Competition Programme to the film ‘The Damned Don't Cry’ (Les damnés ne pleurent pas) directed by Fyzal Boulifa.  

The award for the best European film according to the audience went to Nina Ognjanović for the film ‘Where the Road Leads’, and the award was presented to her by the Ambassador and Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Serbia, Emanuele Giaufret. 

The international jury unanimously agreed to bestow the Nebojša Đukelić Award upon director Selcen Ergun for her debut film ‘Snow and the Bear (Kar ve Ayi) as the best regional film in the Main Competition Programme. Thanking the jury for the award, FEST for the invitation, the Serbian co-producer Miloš Ivanović and the Serbian sound crew for a good film, Selcen Ergun stated that she was dedicating the award to the Turkish people who, after the earthquake that had affected ten cities and had displaced half a million people, needed encouragement.

The international jury of the Main Competition Programme of the 51st FEST, composed of directors Vinko Brešan and Laza Razanajatovo, the president of the jury, producer Jelena Mitrović and actors Jovana Stojiljković and Petar Benčina gave a Special Mention to the film ‘The Survival of Kindness’ directed by Rolf de Heer, who received his award in MTS Hall.

‘Thank you, Belgrade, for this honour. I dedicate the award to the young crew that created the film with me’, said the director.

The Best Debut award of the 51st FEST went to Mwajemi Hussein for her role in the film ‘The Survival of Kindness’, which was accepted on her behalf by Rolf de Heer, who said:

‘I spoke to Mwajemi a few hours ago and she was so excited she could hardly speak. This is her first film, and before that she had never even set foot in a cinema. She said she wanted me to thank everyone. I said to her: "You mean the festival?" She said: "No, everyone”. Well, thank you all.’
The Best Actress award was given to Aicha Tebbae for her role in the film ‘The Damned Don't Cry’ (Les damnés ne pleurent pas). The award will be presented later. She thanked the festival for the award in a video message.

The Best Actor award was won by Mohsen Tanabandeh for the role of Shakib in the film ‘World War III’ (Jang-e jahani sevom), and that award will also be presented at a later date.
The best screenplay of the 51st FEST was written by Isabel Peña and Rodrigo Sorogoyen for the film ‘The Beasts (As bestas), while the Belgrade Victor Award for Best Film and Best Director went to director Houman Seyyedi for the film ‘World War III’, who thanked both the festival and the jury with a video message. All three awards will be presented later.

The 51st FEST was closed by director Radivoje Raša Andrić, and the audience had the opportunity to see the premiere of Puriša Đorđević's latest film ‘Mouth Full of Earth’.

During the festival from 24 February until now, we saw more than a hundred films in six selections.

FEST had an addition this year, a new segment FEST pro, intended for professionals, students and lovers of the seventh art.

From March 6 to 12, POST FESTUM takes place, a programme of FEST films that the audience can additionally see in five cinema halls in Belgrade.




Knjaz Miloš