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'Virgin Mountain,' 'Democrats' win Tribeca Film Festival prizes

Friday, April 24, 2015 - 02:06

The Danish-Icelandic narrative 'Virgin Mountain and the documentary ''Democrats'' win the top prizes at the Tribeca Film Festival. Alicia Powell reports.

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"Virgin Mountain," a Danish-Icelandic film about late bloomers and first love, won the best narrative award at the Tribeca Film Festival. Gunnar Jonsson, who portrays the 43-year old outsider in the film was named best actor and Hannah Murray, the star of the Danish drama "Bridgend," picked up the best actress prize. "Democrats" which follows the quest for democracy in Zimbabwe, was named best documentary. The film follows the story of two political rivals in Zimbabwe as they tried to bridge their differences to create a new constitution for the African nation. SOUNDBITE: Camilla Nielsson, director, saying (English): "I'm totally shocked. I'm very overwhelmed. This is the first time something like this has happened to me. So wonderful. I'm very surprised and I'm very happy that maybe this award can bring some spotlight on the African continent and the situation in Zimbabwe." Zachary Treitz won the best new narrative director award for the U.S. film "Men Go to Battle," which jurors praised for its "historical and emotional authenticity." The Albert Maysles new documentary director award, named for the director who died earlier this year, went to Ewan McNichol and Anna Sandilands for their film "Uncertain," about a Texas town whose livelihood is being threatened. SOUNDBITE: Anna Sandilands, director, saying (English): "This is such a surprise. The film is a bit of an outlier I think in documentary. It's a quite film, it's a really personal film. So we're really, really surprised, stunned to have won the award. We are so grateful to Tribeca and to the jury for recognizing the film. Whatever they saw in it." "Sworn Virgin," directed by Laura Bispuri, won the Nora Ephron prize, which was named for the late writer-director and is awarded to a female director or writer. The winners were chosen from 12 narrative and documentary films submitted by 19 countries, and the best new directors from selected from 26 feature films. The Tribeca Film festival was established after the September 11, 2001 attacks to revitalize the downtown area of New York and help business and arts production.

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'Virgin Mountain,' 'Democrats' win Tribeca Film Festival prizes

Friday, April 24, 2015 - 02:06