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‘Killing Jesus’ Wins Big at Colombia’s 2018 Macondo Academy Awards

The Macondos, Colombia’s Academy Awards, were held over the weekend, and Laura Mora’s “Killing Jesus” was the big winner, scooping five awards, including best picture for a Colombian feature.

The win caps off a whirlwind 14 months since the film’s 2017 Toronto world premiere and San Sebastian European premiere,  where it won the Eroski Youth Award, Fedeora Award and two special mentions.

A semi-autobiographical film, “Killing Jesus” unspools in Medellin, the base of operations for Pablo Escobar’s cartel, which still suffers reverberations of the violence from his time as the world’s most notorious drug kingpin. Mora used non-professional actors to tell the revenge story of a young girl whose father is gunned down right before her eyes, and who, after a chance encounter with the killer at a nightclub, decides to embark on a mission of revenge.

Diego Ramirez’s Bogota and Cali-based 64A Films, the Colombian producer of TV smash hit “Pablo Escobar: The Drug Lord” – the series where Mora cut her teeth as a director – and AZ Films produced, in association with Caracol Television and Dago García Productions. “Killing Jesus” has sold handsomely for Madrid’s Latido Films.

Clare Weiskopf and Nicolas van Hemelryck’s “Amazona,” a tale of a reunion between a pregnant young woman and the mother who abandoned her when she was just 11, scooped Best Documentary as well as best editing and original music. In its festival and awards run the film also was also selected for Amsterdam’s IDFA, Edinburgh, Spain’s Goyas and won the Audience Award at the Cartagena Intl. Film Festival.

William Vega’s “Sal” (“Salt”) scored a trio of awards for art direction, photography and costume design. The film follows Heraldo, a young man searching for his father who gets lost in the desert and, after an accident on his motorcycle, is taken into a world of exiles by a hermit couple.

The big animated winner was Santiago Caicedo’s black and white “Virus Tropical,” a Crystal Bear nominee at Berlin and audience award winner at SXSW. The film turns on Paola, a Latin American woman born to a priest and a psychic, who struggles for independence and to try and find a mold in which she can fit.

2018 MACONDO AWARDS WINNERS

BEST PICTURE

“Killing Jesus,” (Laura Mora)

BEST DIRECTOR

Laura Mora (“Killing Jesus”)

BEST DOCUMENTARY

“Amazona,” (Clare Weiskopf, Nicolas van Hemelryck)

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

“Virus Tropical,” (Santiago Caicedo)

BEST LEAD ACTRESS

Marcela Benjumea, (“Amalia”)

BEST LEAD ACTOR

Enrique Carriazo, (“Amalia”)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Patricia Tamayo, (“Amalia”)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Camilo Escobar, (“Killing Jesus”)

BEST EDITING

Gustavo Vasco, (“Amazona”)

BEST SCREENPLAY

Laura Mora, Alonso Torres (“Killing Jesus”)

BEST SOUND

Carlos E. Lopera, Gerardo Kalmar, Guido Berenblum (“Killing Jesus”)

BEST ART DIRECTION

Marcela Gómez, (“Sal”)

BEST PHOTOGRAPHY

David Gallego, (“Sal”)

BEST ORIGINAL MUSIC

Camilo Sanabria, (“Amazona”)

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Ana María Acosta, (“Sal”)

BEST MAKEUP

Liliana Cabrejo, (“The Sacrifice”)

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Hector Acosta (“The Sacrifice”)

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

“Virus Tropical” from “Virus Tropical,” (Adriana García)

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