Press Releases

Saturday, 11/17/2012

Finn Wins Best Picture

The top prize of the Munich International Festival of Film Schools goes to a Finnish film / Ten young filmmakers win prizes totalling more than € 50,000

Antti Heikki Pesonen and his crew from the Helsinki film school are the big winners at this year's festival. Pesonen's diploma film "Korsoteoria" ("So it goes") won the VFF Young Talent Award for Best Film on Saturday, Novemeber 17th in Munich. The award is donated by the German Royalty Collecting Company of Film & TV Producers and the winner takes home €7,500 in prize money.

Altogether 11 prizes worth over € 50,000 were awarded at the festival. Other winners were films from Israel, Canada, Spain, Switzerland and Germany. "That just goes to show how widespread the high quality of this year's films were", said festival organizer Diana Iljine. "There are excellent films by newcomers all over the world. Festival audiences here in Munich can attest to that."

"So it goes" is a laconic tragicomedy about unlucky coincidences and coincidental bad luck in the life of a young Finnish woman when a persistent admirer tries to crack her hard shell. The jury led by Dennis Gansel ("Napola", "The Wave") described it as a film "with perfect timing, sensual directing, fine performances and an incredible amount of humanity."  Director Antti Heikki Pesonen is a graduate of the ELO Film School in Helsinki and had a film at the festival in 2009.

The Wolfgang Längsfeld Award for the most original film at the festival was presented - for the very first time - to the Israeli film "How I killed Rabin". Set against the tragic backdrop of a political assassination, it is the story of an Israeli teenager's falling in love for the first time. Writer-director Michael Alalu of the Sam Spiegel Film & Television School in Jerusalem also won the Luggi Waldleitner Award for Best Screenplay.

Canadian newcomer Stephen Dunn from Toronto won the Arte Short Film Prize for "Life doesn't frighten me" and the Spanish film "Cargols!" ("Snails!") by Geoffrey Cowper received the Special Award of the Jury President.

The ARRI Award for Best Documentary went to "Sterben nicht vorgesehen" by Matthias Stoll from the Kunsthochschule für Medien in Cologne. A very personal film that dealt with the death of the filmmaker's own father.

The Prix Interculturel for the Best Film Fostering Intercultural Dialogue was awarded to Talkhon Hamzavi from the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste for "Parvaneh", about a young Afghan woman seeking political asylum in Switzerland.

The prize for the Best Production of a German Film, the Panther Prize went to "Cowboy und Indianer" by Jan-Gerrit Seyler of the Hamburg Media School.  Director of Photography Friede Clausz won the Student Camera Award for "Teardrop" (HFF/M).

Also awarded for the first time this year was the Hofbräu Trophy for the best beer commercial. Munich film student Yatri Niehaus won for "Immer sonntags" ("Sundays"). In the festival's other special competition Giannina LaSalvia from the London Film School won the Climate Clips Award for "Hot & Bothered". This prize goes to the best clip on climate change and renewable energy.

For an entire week, Munich audiences had the opportunity to see films by tomorrow's top directors - 50 films from 22 countries. "The interest in the latest trends from around the world was quite astounding," commented Iljine. "Almost all of the screenings were sold out - 98%."