Ash Mayfair’s Vietnamese film “The Third Wife” won best film at the 24th Kolkata international film festival’s international competition on Saturday. Mayfair’s debut feature previously won awards at Toronto, San Sebastian and Chicago. Mayfair was present to collect her award, presented by actress Tabu (“Life of Pi”) and filmmaker Shoojit Sircar.
Kolkata’s international competition is known for its generous prize money. Mayfair took home $71,000 for her win. Egyptian/Austrian filmmaker Abu Bakr Shawky won best director and a purse of $30,000 for “Yomeddine.” India’s Churni Ganguly won a jury special mention in the international competition for “A Timeline”, alongside Hungary’s Arpad Bogdan for “Genesis.”
Praveen Morchhale’s “Widow of Silence” won best film in Kolkata’s Indian competition. The film had its world premiere at Busan in October. Arijit Biswas won best director for “Sun Goes Around The Earth.”
Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam’s “The Sweet Requiem” that bowed in Toronto won the NETPAC Asian Select award. Ishani Kanjilal Dutta won the Indian documentary competition for “Say Cheese.”
The festival was opened on Nov. 10 by Bollywood stars Shah Rukh Khan and Amitabh Bachchan. The focus country this year was Australia, and there was a retrospective of Phillip Noyce, who also delivered a masterclass. The festival also celebrated the centenary of Bengali-language cinema.