‘Firaaq’ scoops Asian fest honors

Indian film picks up multiple awards

SINGAPORE — “Firaaq,” an Indian movie about sectarian violence in Gujarat, took top honors Wednesday at the Asian Festival of First Films.

Pic, helmed and co-written by actress Nandita Das, collected kudos for film, screenplay and also took home the Foreign Correspondents Assn. Purple Orchid Award for film.

Dante Nico Garcia was named director for “Ploning,” which this year carries Philippines’ foreign-language Oscar hopes.

China’s Jia Xuhua took actress honors for “The Mountain and the Song,” while real-life magician Bosco Francis was named best actor for playing a magician in “My Magic,” by local helmer Eric Khoo.

Seven-day fest received 638 submissions for its competition, and whittled that down to 28 films and documentaries from 26 territories.

Best Film
“Firaaq,” Nandita Das (India)

Producer (shared)
“A Decade of Love,” William Ho-Hon Tam and Angel Hon (China)
“Little Zizou,” Dinaz Stafford, Sooni Taraporevala and Vandana Malik (India)

Special citation
“Khastegi” (Sex My Life), Esmaeil Mirzaei Ghomi & Bahman Motamedian (Iran)

Director
“Ploning,” Dante Nico Garcia (Philippines)

Cinematographer / Editor
“Khuda ke liye” (In the Name of God), Ali Mohammad (Pakistan)

Actor
“My Magic,” Bosco Francis (Singapore)

Actress
“The Mountain and the Song,” Jia Xuhua (China)

Screenplay / Script
“Firaaq,” Nandita Das (India)

Documentary
“Attitude,” Blackie Chen (Taiwan)

Director of Documentary
“Peeking Through Chungking Mansions,” Bill Yip (Hong Kong)

Short Film
“The Great Identity Swindle,” Nikesh Shukla (U.K.)

Foreign Correspondents Assn. Purple Orchid Award for Best Film
“Firaaq,” Nandita Das (India)

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