Indian films won the most important awards at Transilvania IFF.23

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The 23rd edition of the Transilvania International Film Festival announced its winners during the Closing Gala held Saturday evening at the National Theatre in Cluj-Napoca. The Transilvania Trophy, worth 10,000 euros, went to the Indian film Girls Will Be Girls. The debut film of director Shuchi Talati explores what it means to be a woman in a strict and oppressive environment through the coming-of-age story of a teenage girl from a boarding school in the Himalayas, whose mother does not seem to have experienced maturity either.

“The story of this film is very rooted in India, but I always hoped that people outside this very specific space and time where the story takes place would resonate with it. I feel like this award says that,” said Shuchi Talati in a video presented at the gala.

Another Indian film was also rewarded with the Special Jury Prize, worth 1,500 euros: The Adamant Girl, directed by Vinothraj Palani, who was previously awarded at Transilvania IFF in 2021 for his debut film Pebbles. The Official Competition Jury was also impressed by the way director Sebastián Quebrada tells a personal story in The Other Son, following the inner conflicts of each character. He was awarded the Best Director Prize, worth 3,000 euros.

The Best Acting Prize, worth 1,000 euros, offered by Conceptual Lab by Theo Nissim, was awarded to Hassan Pourshirazi for his role in The Old Bachelor (directed by Oktay Baraheni). As the jury members explained their choice, “the actor fearlessly and unashamedly throws himself into a visceral performance of a character embodying absolute evil in all its complexity.”

The Feature Film Award within the Romanian Days competition was won by the independent film Dismissed, directed by Horia Cucută and George ve Ganæaard. This prize includes 2,000 euros, offered by DACIN SARA, and laboratory services worth 10,000 euros, offered by CINELAB Romania. The documentary Alice On & Off, directed by Isabela Tent, was awarded the ZFR Debut Prize, worth 1,500 euros, offered by Banca Transilvania, as well as the Special Jury Mention “What’s Up, Doc?” and the FIPRESCI Prize.

The What’s Up, Doc? competition, which includes films that play with the conventions of documentary cinema, was won by Kix (directed by Dávid Mikulán, Bálint Révész). The prize worth 2,000 euros was awarded for “the cinematic confidence with which the authors accompany, as detached accomplices, the transformation of a child.” Bálint Révész, one of the directors, stated in a video shown at the Closing Gala that “Transilvania IFF functions as a space where professionals from the Hungarian film industry can meet each other, but also with international guests, in a festival that has always had a special focus on Hungarian films. For us, it’s more than just a film festival.”

Stere Gulea, Morometii 3

The Transilvania IFF audience also chose their favorites this year. The Audience Award, worth 2,000 euros, offered by Mastercard, went to Summer Brother (directed by Joren Molter), while Moromeții 3 (directed by Stere Gulea) received the Award for the Most Popular Romanian Film of the festival (Vodafone Hearts’ Award), worth 2,500 euros, offered by Vodafone.

The complete list of awards offered at the 23nd edition of the Transilvania International Film Festival is available on tiff.ro.

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