Pic nabs Sakura Grand Prix

Israeli helmer Nir Bergman’s childhood drama “Intimate Grammar” won the 23rd Tokyo Film Festival’s Sakura Grand Prix on Sunday, eight years after Bergman won the honor for his feature debut “Broken Wings.”

Based on David Grossman’s novel, “Intimate Grammar” is set in Israel in the 1960s and is a coming-of-age pic about a boy who doesn’t want to become a man like his hard-shelled father, a Holocaust survivor, and stops growing for three years.

The special jury prize, the fest’s second prize, went to Kaneto Shindo’s WWII homefront drama “Post Card.”

The 98-year-old helmer accepted the award — and the applause of the crowd at the Roppongi Hills theater complex’s main theater — saying that the pic would be his last in a six-decade directing career.

The award for director went to Gilles Paquet-Brenner, the French helmer of “Sarah’s Key.” The pic, about an American journalist researching the Holocaust in France, also scooped the audience award.

The actress prize went to China’s Fan Bingbing for her work in “Buddha Mountain,” which also won the best artistic contribution prize, while actor honors went to Wang Qian-yuan for “The Piano in a Factory.”

In the Winds of Asia-Middle East section the award went to Korean helmer Shin Su-Won’s film-within-a-film “Passerby #3″ while special mention was awarded to Chinese/Malaysian youth drama “The Tiger Factory.”

The best picture award in the Japanese Eyes section for local indie pics, went to Koji Fukada’s contemporary dramady “Hospitalite.”

The Toyota Earth Grand Prix for best eco-theme pic went to Canadian docu-maker Kevin McMahon’s “Waterlife,” while the Toyota Earth Grand Prix special jury prize was awarded to Joseph Vilsmaier’s mountaineering pic “Nanga Parbat.”

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