You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Final Cut in Venice Workshop Prizewinners Announced

“Mother, I am Suffocating. This Is My Last Film About You” stands out

Experimental film “Mother, I am Suffocating. This Is My Last Film About You,” directed by Lemongah Jeremiah Mosese, who is from the tiny South African kingdom of Lesotho, has emerged as the standout title at this year’s Final Cut in Venice workshop which provides post-production support and partnership opportunities to films from Africa and the Arab world.

Set in the wastelands of an unnamed African country, “Mother” is described in promotional materials as a symbolic “socio-political voyage” within a society caught “between religion, identity, and collective memory” and also “a furious lamentation to a mother, a land, a hero, a victim, a martyr.” 

The almost completed docufiction by Mosese (pictured, center) who is a Berlinale Talent Campus alumnus, won six prizes for a total of € 39,000 ($45,000), which will allow it to close financing of its  € 75,000 budget.

The Biennale Prize awarded by a jury of producers/distributors comprising Raffaella Di Giulio of Italy’s Fandango, Carole Scotta of France’s Haut et Court and Jose Michel Butler of Switzerland’s Adok Film, went to Moroccan director Nadir Bouhmouch’s “Movement,” about resilient villagers engaged in a seven-year battle against Africa’s biggest silver mine which is siphoning off their water threatening their livelihoods.

Other Final Cut works that will receive different types of support, including free color correction, sound mix, distribution, DCP costs and cash are:

— Sudanese director Suhaib Gasmelbari’s “The Waiting Bench,” about a group of four idealistic Sudanese filmmakers who studying cinema in the ’60s and ’70s who get together and return to Sudan after a 15 year exile and roam the country in a van with some outdoor screening equipment determined to inspire a love for cinema. 

—Egyptian director Hisham Saqr’s “Certified Mail” about an Egyptian wife and mother struggling with suicidal thoughts who must learn to face them on her own as her husband faces incarceration for a mistake at work.

During the awards ceremony Pascal Diot, who heads the Venice Production Bridge as the fest’s market is known, noted that the six projects which made the cut to compete for prizes were selected out of roughly 90 submissions, more than twice as many as last year. This means that “this workshop now means something now in Africa and the Middle East,” he said as it becomes an integral part of the existing circuit of similar platforms. Diot vowed that Venice “will continue to be there” to help the cinematographies of Africa and the Middle East.

Final Cut in Venice is organized by the Venice Production Bridge in collaboration with both the Amiens International Film Festival and the Fribourg International Film Festival.

More Film

  • Fox Searchlight logo

    Film News Roundup: Fox Searchlight Launches Searchlight Shorts

    In today’s film news roundup, Fox Searchlight starts a shorts channel, Uma Thurman signs with ICM and Miramax signs animation exec Michael Lachance. SEARCHLIGHT SHORTS Fox Searchlight Pictures’ chairmen Nancy Utley and Stephen Gilula have announced the launch of “Searchlight Shorts” as a collection of short films. The shorts are available on Fox Searchlight’s YouTube [...]

  • ImMature - cr: MX Player

    Indian Streamers Ramp up Original Productions

    Ever since global streaming giants Amazon Prime Video and Netflix entered the Indian OTT space in 2016, the conversation around original series has mostly revolved around them, thanks in part to market leader 21st Century Fox’s Hotstar’s circumspect attitude at the time about producing content. Netflix had great success with “Sacred Games,” while Amazon rode [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Hollywood Agents, Writers Guild Make Little Progress in Talks

    Leaders of Hollywood agencies and the Writers Guild of America made little progress in Tuesday meeting to negotiate proposed rule revisions to how agents represent writers. The WGA said after the meeting — the fifth since Feb. 5 — that talks would resume later this week but did not give a specific day. “The Agencies [...]

  • Village Rockstars

    Female Filmmakers Are a Growing Voice in India

    The Indian film industry has historically been a male-dominated one, but the winds of change are blowing across the country, albeit slowly. Better-served than the rest of the country is the Mumbai-based Hindi-language industry, where there are several active female filmmakers including Zoya Akhtar (“Gully Boy”), Reema Kagti (“Gold”), Leena Yadav (“Rajma Chawal”), Gauri Shinde [...]

  • Florence Pugh

    Scarlett Johansson's 'Black Widow' Movie Adds Florence Pugh

    “Black Widow’s” web may soon be growing. Sources tell Variety that Florence Pugh is in talks to join Scarlett Johansson’s standalone superhero film. Pugh has been on the hot list for this second lead role since last fall, but Marvel wanted to open up the field to other actresses at the beginning of the year. [...]

  • Mira Lesmana Sets up Indonesia Remake

    Mira Lesmana Sets Up Indonesian Remake of CJ's 'Sunny'

    Indonesia’s Miles Film and Korea’s CJ Entertainment are to co-produce an Indonesian remake of Korean hit “Sunny.” The film is a female-driven dramedy about a group of adult friends who reunite 20 years after high school. Directed by Kang Hyoung-chul, “Sunny” was one of the highest-grossing movies in Korea when it was released in 2011. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content