Icelandic comedy takes top prize at Italo fest

Rome– Icelandic absurdist comedy “Either Way,” Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurdsson helming debut about two highway maintenance men in the Nordic wilderness, took top prize at the 29th Turin Film Festival on Saturday.

The Italo indie fest dedicated to discoveries also awarded two special jury nods, in a tie, to Gallic pregnancy-pact pic “17 Girls,” by sister writing and directing duo Delphine and Muriel Coulin, and “OK, Enough Goodbye,” by Rania Attieh and Daniel Garcia, a Lebanese-United Arab Emirates co-production. Both are also first works.

Thesping nods went to German actress Renate Krossner for her role as the troubled wife of a disbled man in Andreas Kannengiesser’s “Way Home,” while Brit actor Martin Compston took the actor nod for Craig Viveiros’ prison drama, “Ghosted.”

The main jury headed by U.S. helmer-photographer Jerry Shatzberg also comprised U.S. producer Michael Fitzgerald, Italo thesp Valeria Golino and helmers Shekhar Kapur (India) and Brillante Mendoza (Philippines).

A separate jury dished out Turin’s top nod in the international docu competish to Gallic helmer Sylvain George’s “The Fragments (My face, My Revolt, My Name)” about anti-immigration violence.

Turin, which opened with Bennett Miller’s “Moneyball,” had a strong U.S. presence, including Alexander Payne who came with “The Descendants” as an out-of-competish entry. Payne donated the pic’s original screenplay to the Turin Film Museum, which backs the fest.

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