You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Deniz Gamze Erguven’s ‘Mustang’ Takes Top Prize at Sarajevo Film Festival

LONDON — Deniz Gamze Erguven’s “Mustang” has won the Heart of Sarajevo Award for best feature film at the Sarajevo Film Festival, which is South-East Europe’s leading movie event.

The film, which is set in a village in Turkey, centers on five sisters who are forced to stay home rather than go to school due to an allegation of impropriety. Marriages are arranged for them. The girls, driven by the desire for freedom, fight back against the limits imposed on them.

The actress prize was shared by “Mustang’s” lead actresses — Gunes Sensoy, Doga Doguslu, Tugba Sunguroglu, Elit Iscan and Ilayda Akdogan.

Sarajevo’s Special Jury Prize went to Laszlo Nemes’ “Son of Saul,” which won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival. The film is set in 1944 in Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp. Saul is a member of the Sonderkommando, the group of prisoners forced to assist the Nazis in the extermination. He discovers the corpse of a boy he believes is his son and decides to offer the boy a proper burial.

Athina Rachel Tsangari’s “Chevalier” was given a Special Jury Mention, and the film’s lead actors — Yorgos Kentros, Vangelis Mouríkis, Panos Koronis, Makis Papadimitriou, Yorgos Pyrpassopoulos and Sakis Rouvas — shared the best actor prize.

The film follows a group of men who are returning from a winter fishing trip on a yacht. When a mechanical problem leaves them trapped on their boat, they kill the time playing a game they devise, called Chevalier. Chevalier is an entertaining and highly competitive game. No one intends to get off the yacht without being crowned its winner.

The jury was composed of Romanian director Calin Peter Netzer, Diana Bustamante, artistic director of Cartagena Film Festival in Colombia, Zrinka Cvitesic, a Croatian actress who is based in the U.K., British producer Mike Downey, and Serbian director Maja Milos.

The Heart of Sarajevo Award for documentary film was won by Alexander Nanau’s “Toto and His Sisters.” The film centers on Toto and his sisters, Ana and Andreea. During their mother’s imprisonment, Toto learns dancing, reading and writing, while his sisters try to keep the family together.

The Special Jury Prize for documentary film went to Tamas Almasi’s “Titita.” This follows Anti, a 19-year-old Roma who loves to play the guitar. He is presented with the chance to break out of a rundown Roma slum in a remote corner of Hungary and travels to the Snetberger Music Talent Center, where he has been selected for his talent.

In the festival’s industry program, CineLink, Aida Begic’s “A Ballade” took the Eurimages Co-production Development Award, and Adrian Sitaru and Anamaria Antoci’s “The Fixer” took the top prize in the Work in Progress section, the Post Republic Award.

Click here for a full list of prizes.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • For web story

    Toronto: Sony Pictures Classics Buys 'The Burnt Orange Heresy' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Sony Pictures Classics has nabbed the rights to “The Burnt Orange Heresy,” Variety has learned. The indie label plans to release the film in 2020. The Italian-American thriller was directed by Giuseppe Capotondi and stars Claes Bang, Elizabeth Debicki, Mick Jagger, and Donald Sutherland. Scott Smith adapted Charles Willeford’s novel of the same name, transporting [...]

  • Thomasin McKenzie and Essie Davis

    Thomasin McKenzie and Essie Davis to Star in 'Justice of Bunny King'

    Essie Davis, star of “The Babadook” and autumn festival hit “Babyteeth,” and “Jojo Rabbit” co-star Thomasin McKenzie will headline upcoming drama “The Justice of Bunny King.” The film, now shooting in New Zealand, is a triumph over adversity tale about women fighting their way back from the bottom of society. It is the debut feature [...]

  • Calm With Horses

    Nick Rowland Talks About Toronto Debut Film 'Calm With Horses'

    “Calm with Horses,” which made its world premiere in Toronto’s TIFF in the Discovery section, is the feature directorial debut of Nick Rowland (Amazon series “Ripper Street”), and stars Barry Keoghan (Marvel’s upcoming “The Eternals,” “Dunkirk”), Cosmo Jarvis (“Annihilation”), and Niamh Algar (BBC’s “The Virtues”). The script, which was adapted from Colin Barrett’s short story [...]

  • Colin Trevorrow Directs Jurassic World Short

    Colin Trevorrow Returns to Jurassic World in Short Film 'Battle at Big Rock'

    Dinosaurs are roaming the Earth again. In a new short from “Jurassic World” director Colin Trevorrow, rogue beasts wreak havoc on a family camping trip. The eight-and-a-half minute film, titled “Battle at Big Rock,” takes place a year after the events of “Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom.” The 2018 blockbuster — starring Chris Pratt and Bryce [...]

  • Bert Kreischer The Machine

    Legendary Lands Rights to Bert Kreischer’s Viral Story 'The Machine' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Legendary has optioned the rights to develop comedian Bert Kreischer’s story “The Machine” into a feature film following its viral success, sources tell Variety. The video has generated more than 85 million views on Facebook and YouTube since hitting the social media channels in December 2016 and Legendary moved aggressively to land the rights. Kreischer [...]

  • Margot Robbie poses at the launch

    Margot Robbie in Talks to Executive Produce, Star in Comedy 'Fools Day'

    Margot Robbie is in negotiations to executive produce and star as a fourth-grade teacher in New Line’s comedy “Fools Day.” New Line has acquired Cody Blue Snider’s short film of the same name to adapt into the feature project. Snider, who co-wrote and directed the short, will direct the full-length feature from a script he [...]

  • M Night Shyamalan'Glass' film premiere, Arrivals,

    M. Night Shyamalan Sets Two New Films at Universal

    M. Night Shyamalan will write and direct two new movies at Universal Pictures, the studio announced Monday. The currently untitled thrillers will be released in theaters on Feb. 26, 2021 and Feb. 17, 2023, respectively. “M. Night Shyamalan continues to create exciting, highly original stories that keep global audiences on the edge of their seats,” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content